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The History of Christain Education

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THE CHRISTAIN EDUCATION OF YOUTH A study of the history of professional youth ministry shows that over the years they come a long way. In the late 1950s churches began to invest significantly in salary funds in staff positions for youth ministry before that the youth ministry was done by mostly volunteer workers who were unqualified and poorly trained. Also it can be said that evangelical churches grudgingly instituted the youth ministry because they feared that Para church organization would take the youth away from the churches.
GAINING A SOCIOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE
Youth ministry in the 1950s was a calculated attempt of countering the influence of secular entertainment on Christian youth and they introduced 1. Christian film in the hopes that to be a possible alternative to movies in secular theaters. 2. High powered recreational and social programs were developed as an alternative to school dances 3. Large rallies were organized in major cities with famous Christian entertainer as a way to convince youth that they could be Christians and still be popular and well liked
In the 1950s entertainment was used to retain youth within the church .The 1960s was a landmark decade in the country. The church’s approach to youth ministry was greatly affected by the sociological and cultural times. Youth in the country began to demonstrate that they cared greatly about the issues related to the world they lived. Those involved in youth ministry realized that young people cared for their leaders than mere entertainment .Some even rejected entertainment as worthy activity for youth ministry. They looked to their church leader to provide biblical responses to major issues such as war, racial discrimination, and social injustice e.tc. This turbulence in the 1960s taught youth ministry professionals that young people needed wise advisors and models who later took groups of high school and college age people to various mission fields all over the country for short term experiences and cross cultural involvement which they enjoyed more than entertainment. This activist mentally dominated the youth ministry scene well in the1970s.

In the 1980s pleasure motif dominated youth and adolescent. There were well documented facts dependence and epidemic violence which till date is common in high schools. That young people had enormous amount of discretionary money to spend with the idea that they were willing to pay the price that happiness, pleasure, popularity and fame out of life. The 1990s had a more disturbing trend as a decade of eroding sexual standards, drug The most disturbing aspects in this sociological commentary is the way in which adolescent culture which is harder to understand and more difficult to reach. Perhaps one of the most disturbing aspects of this sociological commentary is the way in which adolescents have sought to get their needs met through sexual involvements. The results of this sexually promiscuous lifestyle are alarming. On a typical day in the United States,

* 7742 teenagers become sexually active * 623 teenagers contract syphilis * 2795 teenagers girls becomes pregnant * 372 teenagers girls suffer a miscarriage * 1106 teenagers girls obtain an abortion * 1295 teenage girls give birth to a child * 2556 children are born out of wedlock
Further, this bent on obtaining pleasure, wealth, popularity, and fame have led many young people to a life of violence. Again on a typical day in the United states: * 135000 students brings begun to school * 10 children are killed with gun * 211 teenagers are arrested for drug abuse * 437 children arrested for drinking or drunk driving Some teenagers have given have giving up hope for any meaningful satisfaction on life. Not only are their own lives so void of meaning that they no longer can cope, but the life of those closest to them, their parents, are also falling apart. Once more, on a typical day in the United States: * 6 teenagers commit suicide * 1512 teenagers drop out of school * 3288 children run away from home * B cn2989 children see their parents’ divorce.

WHO ARE YOUTH A psychologist named G hall coined out adolescent to describe the years between childhoods to adulthood which is believed to be important. But for the purpose of local church ministry, youth is a term which applies generally to students in junior high and high school years. In some communities where junior high include grade six and eight, with some with moving the sixth grade in junior high and ninth grade into high school. This trend only compounds the problem in training children who are in the correct age bracket. IDENTIFICATION OF RELEVANT NEEDS The needs of youth which are relevant to a successful ministry to merge from understanding of two dominant themes in adolescent development with the cognitive mental development and psycho –social development and relationship those dimensions have with spiritual growth and development .Physical development has interesting attachment to psycho –social development which shows that 1. Teenagers need guidance that can help them in maintaining between what students know and new information they are receiving from their surroundings. 2. Teenagers are able for the first time in their lives to think flexibility in applying solutions in a variety of sometimes interesting ways. 3. Teenagers are mentally creating what Piaget refers to Created reality which is testing incoming information and guidance which a Christian perspective. 4. Guidance and help in asking questions with the words why? What? PSYCHO- SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT NEEDS Erickson saw a major task in helping youth in the formation of a secure ego because failure to reach this ego will lead to a lack of personal definition, commitment and a loss of the sense of togetherness. Specific needs arise from the developmental aspect of teenage are 1. Need to accept oneself as god’s special creation: this will help teenagers struggling with their physical bodies and appearance and trying to measure up to the cultural norm .they need to be affirmed that their worth as persons is not related to their physical capabilities. 2. Need to balance Self-esteem: teenager need to know that they have individual worth to God and are unique persons. 3. Need for clear Gender role definition: we live in a society with legitimate concerns with roles and functions of women. For long evangelical churches have mistaught his people .teenagers need accurate teaching in this matter. 4. Need for Biblical guidance about human sexuality: teenagers need to be taught the biblical model for human sexuality and how abstinence protects from the emotional trauma of sexual promiscuity and pain related diseases and the heartache of unwanted pregnancy. 5. Need to make appropriate and responsible decisions in the face of peer pressure: many teens have a great difficulty going against the flow of their peers when making decisions. They need support to make the right decisions and encouragement to feel good about their decisions in the face of scrutiny. 6. Need for an outlet to contribute to life of the church: teenagers do not look forward to a life of sitting and been taught they seek involvement and opportunities to influence the church they attend and serve the lord. 7. Teenagers need to be affirmed in areas where their development is matching biblical patterns: Too many leaders and parents are quick to criticize young people when their attitude and behavior are inappropriate. They need to be affirmed when they seem to think and behave in a biblical way. DEVELOPING A YOUTH MINISTRY In beginning a youth ministry there is steps needed to be taken so that one will not be ill prepared in starting and maintaining a youth ministry. The first step is a prayerful consideration given to the needs of young people. We must resist the temptation that they all are similar and have similar needs .some guiding questions 1. Is the junior the high school population of the community gaining or declining in number. 2. The ethnic or racial backgrounds represented and other pressuring sociological problem facing the community. The next step is to determine if a church has the necessary resources to maintain a successful youth ministry and they are referred to as the 3 fs Folks, Finances and Facilities. FOLKS To maintain a successful youth ministry people are needed, planning by calculating the student to staff ratio and also making sure that the correct age group classification is maintained evaluating to know if the church has enough trained volunteers and staff members to start and maintain the ministry. FINANCES There is always a financial cist incurred in youth ministry some people might see youth ministry as a liability. There is some training ns requirements needed and cost appropriation needed to start and maintain a viable youth ministry. FACILITIES With creative thinking and application this is the easiest of the three major resources needed churches that do not have enough classroom space for a number of groups should consider having some weekly activities in private home. Step 3 is to decide exactly what kinds of programs a youth ministry should involve them age groups can be divided into two major groups outreach and in reach. OUTREACH There is need for evangelism in youth ministry which involve the come level which are activities designed to for non –Christians to attend on the other hand Christian students need to be trained to be comfortable in sharing their faith in Christ with their friends and their school community. Service: Churches all over the nation are discovering the untapped potential in many high school and students. INREACH This involves 1. Teaching : Many high school student are ready to serve the church education as program teachers in some case themselves 2. Worship: Young Christian’s people love to worship God every bit as their adults but they worship differently they should be encouraged to enjoy their worship and adults will discover some new ways to worship God too. 3. Counseling: Church youth have a number of counseling needs that need to be met by adequately trained adult staffs and volunteers 4. Leadership Training: They are needed to be trained and equipped to be able to do the ministry. In summary the youth of America are in need of the Gospel. The future of the great country is the ability to shape and influence the ministry of youth who are Godly. Prayer, careful consideration and sensitivity to the community and environmental concern are needed to implement resources, Christian professionals to train young people effectively. ( coined from The history of christain education)

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