Pioneering Youth Ministry – New Edition of Anvil Journal

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Pioneering Youth Ministry is the focus of the new edition of Anvil journal which is online free as either pdf or individual articles to read online. It is guest edited by the wonderful John Wheatley. He takes the four youthwork values of informal education, equality of opportunity, participation and empowerment with an article commissioned on each and a reflection on some practice related to each. John suggests a simple way of describing pioneer youth ministry as going to young people beyond the existing Christian communities to create new communities with young people. He then elaborates on that…

In many ways, all youth ministry is pioneering in that it leads innovation within the church. However, there is a particular way of doing youth ministry that is particularly pioneering, and in my opinion, it is essentially youth and community work undertaken as pioneer mission. It is deeply rooted in the values and practices of youth and community work, holding in high regard the importance of voluntary participation, informal education, empowerment and equality of opportunity; and through these lenses it is able to navigate a path that grows new Christian community beyond the existing church. Pioneer youth ministry is wholly contextual, engaging in a theological endeavour to root the gospel in a community beyond the reach of the traditional church.

It’s another really good issue and the articles will be of interest and relevant whether or not youth ministry is the focus of your pioneering. In my view the wider church has taken its eye off the ball of youth ministry which is a real shame because without youth ministry we’re in big trouble. That’s why we are excited at CMS about our growing partnership with Streetspace/Frontier Youth Trust and to be able to offer a route through the certificate which has a youth ministry focus. Big thanks to John for pulling this issue together.

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