Jez Ferguson’s magnifying glass throws the spotlight on youth
Over the last few months of lockdown, we have been meeting with the young people regularly, primarily at Core, our Sunday evening group. During Core we tend to spend about an hour playing games and then an hour discussing the Bible together. Recently we have discovered several new games which we’ve found work really well over Zoom; we found an online version of group-favourite game Assassins; we have been playing a game called Spyfall where one of you is a spy trying to blend in, while we ask each other questions to work out which of us is the spy; and we have been playing Gartic phone, which is a mash-up of Chinese whispers and Pictionary.
During our Bible discussion, we recently finished a series on ‘Big Questions’, where we discussed difficult and/or controversial questions, such as ‘Why does God allow evil?’ and ‘Does the Bible encourage the death penalty?’. During one of our last Big Questions, we discussed how the world might end, and it raised a lot more questions. As a result of this we started a series on the Book of Revelation and have been working our way through it. We are reading and focusing on the seven letters to the seven churches, as it is perhaps the most directly relevant segment for us.
The Wednesday group has been much harder to manage. Since September we have struggled to maintain regular attendance and have relaunched it several times with different focuses/themes in the hope of attracting young people. However, each time we have found it doesn’t seem to work over Zoom or otherwise doesn’t interest the young people. Instead, for the last couple of months I have been keeping it open as a drop-in session, where young people can pop in (online) if they need anything, be it a question they’re wrestling with or a space to share if they are feeling low.
Our ‘live’ online youth services have been going well. The next on is on Maundy Thursday, 1 April and we are really excited to have Jordan back to preach to us again. Last time we had 19 live viewers and have had 115 views since.
We have several other things we are looking forward to: this weekend we have our weekend a-stay (in place of a weekend away) when we’re collaborating with St Paul’s Throop to explore what discipleship means. After that we have our Easter-themed scavenger hunt, which I am particularly excited about. Details and information about how to join in are in the newsletter special – hope you have a great time!
Jez Ferguson, youth minister