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His conviction is that we may miss something in the 'shop behavior' and consumer mentality of individuals. What they do 'desire' ' verlangens ' is 'sincere forms of a faith community, a space where they experience God and real mutual relationship with one another. He enters into a discussion with well-known scholars like Heitink and Hendriks and a number of others. After a paragraph on 'Arguments for a Counter Culture' he wrote, with reference to Henk de Roest , that:.

Therefor when she is close to her center, she is evenly outside of herself. I also have to say, when you begin digging more deeply into our missionary vocation, then the resistances begin to surface. We encounter in the Scriptures a difficult gospel, because it means that we must recognize our own captivities, we must recognize that there are many ways that North American culture opposes Christian living, and we must deal with that.

We don't like that. We don't like to be on the margins, but we are a minority. So how do we get used to being a minority and then function with freedom and joy as Christian witnesses, knowing that there are many things that we are doing and concerned with that our society does not particularly welcome?

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The conversion of the 'we' has never been easy. Disciple everyone involved in youth ministry. While continuing this process of developing 'missionary discipleship' Bosch youth ministry can be transformed by intentionally discipling all the members involved in youth ministry.

Youth Ministry Tip # 8 Make Disciples, Not Converts

I think especially of the parents and 'volunteers' both younger and older involved in Christian education. Missional churches must rethink what they do in faith development. Dick describes the situation as follows:.

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Promoting a love of learning and developmental plans are high priorities in vital congregations. Vital churches have a clear picture of what it means to be a Christian believer, a Christian disciple, a Christian leader, and the body of Christ. Youth ministry often did not take this seriously enough. We have allowed people to be involved who were not serious at least not enough about their own 'being in Christ' and with discipling children and adolescents.

Campolo wrote in p. This may even be more specifically true for teaching in youth ministry. No one doubts that youth ministry has always been, still is and should be educational in tone. What went wrong is that this basic notion has often taken a 'scholastics' turn. And as such it is no longer in ministry terms educational. When teaching is not relational, it has almost no place in youth ministry. It certainly will not be 'cultivating a life of active discipleship' Osmer My conviction is that many books that are indeed helping us with teaching cf.

Teaching should be pedagogically grounded and in a scientific way be educationally sound, but how will it differ if we do not just 'teach' pedagogically correct but, within a relationship of love and acceptance, make disciples through our teaching? I believe this lies more on an attitudinal and cultural level than on a pedagogical level.


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Osmer , with reference to Quinn , thinks that 'deep change' lies in a change in 'identity, mission, culture, and operational procedures. One example: It may be wise and show forth our change in culture when we do not refer to 'classes' anymore but to youth groups - where inclusive relationships of love and acceptance are as important if not more than the content we need to teach correctly -or as Lambert calls it 'holistic teaching' cf. What will be characteristic of congregations where the understanding is growing that they are learning communities?

This may help us to understand how we intentionally can change the culture that will benefit disciple-making in youth ministry.

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I want to stay true to my intention to draw Stoppels into this discussion again. He refers to research by the Indianapolis Center for Congregations see for the website in the bibliography where seven elements are named that will 'enhance the learning potential of faith communities' p. The issue at stake in this paragraph is: Only involve and employ 'volunteers' in youth ministry who are serious about their discipleship. I have tried above to 'outline' what kind of faith community or congregation will be such a fertile ground to supply this quality of volunteers.


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Congregations who are serious about the gospel of the Kingdom as they live by the ethos of the King will do so. Stoppels points out that this is more than looking for people who are actively involved, especially in the worship services - the typical evaluation of membership. We should look for a different expectation: An expectation that has to do with 'the teachability of people and their openness for a specific lifestyle based on and seeking for the Kingdom of God' 7 cf.

With references to De Roest and to Wolsheimer Stoppels discusses this 'seriousness' about who we are in Christ. We live by a discipline that flows from our discipleship. De Roest translated the disciplina arcani as the 'secret rule of life'. Stoppels This is the Rule we embrace. This is the Rule we will keep: we say yes to availability; we say yes to vulnerability … A rule is basically a way of life, not a book. Wolsheimer ; cf. My conviction is that there is no way to reform and transform local churches or reform and transform youth ministry other than by taking our God-given identity as vulnerable people saved by grace serious, very serious.

Even our leaders in local churches, especially the trained theologians, should make a clear choice about their core contribution: Are they fulfilling often odd jobs or are they equipping as they grow themselves the core membership to 'as they go, make disciples … '? A re-evaluation of individuation. Lastly I would like to focus on one more dimension of ministry that might help us transform youth ministry and thereby faith communities into disciple-making movements.

Clark describes 'individuation as a key to understanding adolescent development.

101 Ideas for Making Disciples in Your Youth Group

Within a culture where individuality and individualism have become the new gods we need to make a special effort to counter this dehumanising tendency in culture and, almost subconsciously, in youth ministry. Jung who worked with this concept refers to individuation as 'a process of differentiation, having for its goal the development of the individual personality. We certainly do not want to support the very nature of our sinful nature - 'doing and having it my way'. Our very creation challenges this way of being human: We were born from 'two people knowing' one another; we were born or were supposed to be born into a small community of love and caring; within a cultural unit; a national community; and in our case, a faith community.

In South African culture the following saying is well known: ' umuntu ngumuntu ngabanye '! Two older scholars have said it so well. Firet ff. We were born for community, and in communion with others we flourish and become our true self. Borgman This process of becoming the self, in a theological sense, will be enhanced by a serious effort to involve people who have been on the journey longer with each child and adolescent. Dean calls this person a 'Godbearer'. She rightfully refers to what I argued above namely that such a 'Godbearing Life' has certain 'ingredients' Dean Part of it is a 'circle of friends: inviting spiritual friendships' p.

Osmer pleaded for a mentor in the life of adolescents in the confirmation group.


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  7. In literature more specific focused on discipling, mentoring is also an important concept. Gibbs refers to it in the following way:. Christian character needs time to develop and mature for the gifts to be expressed appropriately. There will be missteps along the way, and early attempts may not be that impressive.

    Each person requires training, mentoring and honest evaluation. Ogden describes this notion as part of what he calls a discipling relationship: 'Missing from this approach is the priority of relationships' p. Discipling relationships:. Growth into Christlikeness is the ultimate goal' p. Ogden continues by stating:. In an impersonal world, people hunger for intimacy, personal care, deep friendship and spiritual bonding.

    This is particularly true for men … It takes time … This means having enough vision to think small. In the model he Ogden proposes:.