Saturday, August 05, 2006

As promised...

Ok so Youth Week is over and i am pretty exhausted but it was amazing and i did promise i would fill you in on how things went! ! I don't know if I have ever laughed as much in 5 days as I have this week so that's always a good sign. We had a core group of about 25 young people who attended most of the week which is less than i hoped for but I'm not going to get too bothered by that!

Here's what excited me most this week!
We started each day with some worship and a short devotion. I decided to take the theme of 'serving others' and started the week by looking at Luke 22:24-27 and not thinking of ourselves as better than anyone else. In talking about this I was particularly thinking about the young people from the car park who don’t go to church and whom our church young people don’t mix very well with.

In planning for youth week my hope was that it would really engage both the young people from church and the unchurched and bring them together. However the reality was that the unchurced young people appeared keen but then didn’t show up for various reasons. I was a bit disappointed at times but then a few things happened that really encouraged me and made me sure that we did make progress with this group of people. Firstly about 6 of them came along to our Quiz on Tuesday night in the Youth mobile, I sat with them and I think they had a good night. The following evening I was chatting to them briefly and they told me they felt uncomfortable in the mobile and they felt the church ones were staring at them. One girl actually said ‘why do they think they are better than us?’ This really disappointed me given what I had talked about in Monday morning devotion. So for Thursday's devotion I looked at Phil 2:3-8 reinforcing the idea of not thinking of ourselves as better than anyones else and I told them how the young people from the car park had felt on Tuesday night and what they had said. On Friday night we were back in the Youth Mobile for some funny games and a few of the unchurched ones came in and I was so pleased to see our church ones really making an effort to talk to them and make them feel welcome. This was definitely a bit of a breakthrough!

So I had set out a few hopes and prayer requests for the week in my last posting so how did they work out? Many young people definitely had a really enjoyable week. The weather was perfect for us from Mon-Thurs and then the heavens opened on Friday afternoon! Everyone got soaked to the skin as we competed in the Olympics at the cricket lawn but to be honest the rain just made things even more hilarious! Unchurched young people did come along and the church ones did make an effort to get to know them. All of the volunteers had a great time helping out and time will tell if they are keen to commit more time to the young people in or out of the church. Unfortunatley we didn't get to paint the playpark on Thursday, there was just to much red tape on the side of the council and to little time to sort it out but hopefully another time this will work out. However everyone did have a great day picking litter in the village and serving the people of this community. Now i think it might be time for an afternoon nap for me!!!

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