First United Methodist Church
Youth Ministries
Foundation & Structure

"Where there is no vision, the people perish"  Proverbs 29:18


1.  Purpose Statement:

Our purpose is guided by the mission statement of the United Methodist Church which is:

"To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world."

Our youth ministry purpose statement clearly articulates our compelling vision of what First United Methodist Church of Slidell would like their Youth Ministry to accomplish.  It also acts as a filter through which leaders of the ministry determine ideas which are implemented.  Our purpose is to:

"To make disciples of Jesus Christ through the acts of missions, evangelism, worship, and fellowship."

2.  Statement of Values:

Our values stand guard over the climate of our youth ministry.  The climate or culture of our ministry must never be sacrificed on the alter of achieving measurable goals.  Values protect our youth ministry from becoming so goal-oriented that it sacrifices the things that matter most...people.

Values:

    a.  Grace - "But to each one of us grace has been given." Ephesians 4:7

    b.  Kindness - "Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you."  Ephesians 4:32

    c.  Love - "My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:12-13.

    d.  Mercy - "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.  And do not judge and you will not be judged." Luke 6:36

    e.  Respect - "Respond toward others in an appropriate manner as Christ would have you do." Philippians 2:4

    f.  Togetherness - "The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body.  So it is with Christ."  1 Corinthians 12:12

3.  Communications

Effective communications is vital within a strong youth ministry.  It also is critical in keeping our students safe as outlined in our Safe Sanctuaries policy.  Communication is needed with students (of course), parents, grandparents, friends, visitors, congregation members, committee members, volunteers, and pastors.  With so many different people looking for our information, Crossroads Student Ministry has decided to deploy multiple communication points including:
   
    a.  Email ring for all those who sign up
    b.  Text message service
    c.  Youth newsletter (available both electronically and in paper copy)
    d.  Facebook Fan Page
    e.  The webpage you are on right now!  It is updated to show monthly events as well as annual events.
    f.  Church newsletter
    g.  Church pre-service slides
    h.  Crossroads bulletin board located in the Family Life Center across from the kitchen
    i.  Semi-annual parents meeting

4.  Partnering with Parents

Our youth ministry improves its chances of success by forming strong relationships with parents.  Our ministry believes strongly in helping our parents with one of the hardest jobs in the world: raising a Christian teenager in today's world.  To assist our parents the following resources have been made available:

    a.  The monthly ParentLink Magazine
    b.  The monthly Center for Parent-Youth Understanding newsletter
    c.  Semi-annual parent meetings
    d.  Parental counseling

5.  Curriculum

All teaching and Bible studies within our youth ministry follows the curriculum template outlined in Andy Stanley and Stuart Hall's book, "The Seven Checkpoints: Seven Principles Every Teenager Needs to Know".  By using these seven basic principles in teaching, we find you can have a greater impact on the life of teens.  It also allows our team to plan teaching lessons years in advance.  Additionally, it gives us a solid filter in which we can screen pre-packaged curriculum to see if they meet our curriculum model.  The seven essential principles are:

    a.  Authentic Faith
    b.  Spiritual disciplines
    c.  Moral boundaries
    d.  Healthy friendships
    e.  Wise choices
    f.  Ultimate authority
    g.  Others first

6.  Volunteer Organization

Our volunteer youth workers are the heart of the ministry.  They are ready and available for any of our students and/or their parents at any time.  They are wonderful examples of Christ in the world.  Our team is guided by our Youth Advisory Team (YAT).  The YAT is a group of seasoned youth workers who advise the ministry lead on all matters pertaining to our youth ministry.  they review both events and curriculum as they pertain to our purpose. 

Want to be part of our team?  If you are a student grades 7 through 12, all you have to do is show up at one of our events.  Talk to one of the adult workers and we will get you infused into our group.  If you are an adult looking at answering a call from Christ to help students, check out the instructions on the page entitled "A letter from the Youth Pastor".