Greenwood Forest’s youth ministry was selected by the Institute of Youth Ministry at Princeton Theological Seminary to be a part of the Log College Project. The Log College Project is an effort to figure out new models of youth ministry for the coming decades, particularly models of youth ministry that involve the whole church. We were one of 53 churches in North America selected for the first phase of the project. This involved a team of youth and adults performing tasks around the church to discover more about GFBC’s people, our history, and how we do things. Then, as a group, we did a big group project that evaluated the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats facing the youth ministry, but beyond that we also talked about our hopes.
We identified as our hopes for the youth ministry things like “a better sense of community,” “spiritual growth,” “more enthusiasm,” having a more “diverse group,” and “relating what we learn about God to our everyday lives.” We also found that these hopes are the things that are foundational to a good youth ministry, and we hope to make those into our strengths. We noted the challenges we face in our wide spread across Wake County and beyond and noted the threat such spread can have to participation. We were honest about the things we need to rebuild and the things that need extensive renovation, emphasizing that we need to continue innovating with Faith Formation and providing some more time for reflection after big events like camp or a mission trip.
We will return this reflections to Princeton this week along with some other paperwork that will serve as our application to the second phase of the Log College Project. If accepted into the second phase, we would receive a $15,000 grant for the youth ministry, go to Princeton to brainstorm youth ministry with them, and receive continued support from the seminary for years to come.
If you would like to learn more about any of the specific tasks undertaken during the Log College Project, please talk to Rev. Spears-Newsome!