Family Based Youth Ministry
NYLC Breakout Session
Mark DeVries has a lot of experience in youth ministry. He is the founder of Youth Ministry Architects, a hands-on coaching service for churches whose youth ministries are in transition or churches who hope to see their youth ministries move to the next level. Also, for the past 20 years, Mark has served as the Associate Pastor for Youth and Their Families at First Presbyterian Church in Nashville, Tennessee, where he continues to oversee the youth ministry on a part-time basis.
Mark has seen that churches are struggling to hold onto their kids, especially in their later high school years. Even though churches are good at being friendly, they struggle at creating programs for teens that will help to make them mature Christians. Youth groups can be a lot of fun, the more loyal a kid is to a youth ministry, the less likely they are to join the church, because it's not as exciting. If we want kids to know what it means to be an adult Christian, we've got to hang out with them and find ways for them to spend more time with adult Christians who are living out their faith.