Friday, July 07, 2006

The Church and Young People 1: 'To Whom Shall We Go?'

In the past few weeks, I have become acutely aware of a problem facing the Church in the modern age. The problem of what to do with young people. Children are dealt with in Sunday-School, as has been the case for many a long year. However, there is a problem, throughout the Western World, Children who have gone through Sunday School drop out of the Church as young people. In an attempt to hold onto them, churches have organised activities for them.

However, some disquiet has been raised about the content of activities. Are they too worldly, youth leaders acting as though they were running a secular youth group? Or are they designed without consideration for the special needs of young people?

In this series, I shall be examining the responses of four Welsh churches to this question. My focus will be on the upper end of the 'Youth' category, what was once meant by a 'Youth', that is, a person on the cusp of adulthood, as it is here in particular that serious falling away can take place. We shall start with a famous example, Bethlehem Forward Movement Church, Sandfields, Aberavon.



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