Thursday, September 02, 2004

Youth Missions Network

Well, I just found this arm of the National Network of Youth Ministers, this piece specific to youth missions. Pretty cool huh? Anyone out there ever heard of this before?
It's funny that I just found it when last week I was talking about something like it anyway.

Here are some of their goals and values, with some of my commentary.
1. Focusing on God’s Glory as the Chief Goal
Definitely. As Piper says, God's worship and glory is the foundation for missions.

2. Embracing the primary role of the local church
This is probably my favorite one on the list. It's way to easy for youthworkers to encourage students to go with one of the multitudes of mission organizations. Not that its always a bad thing. In most cases, it's probably a great experience for the student. But those organization seldom involve the local church. Instead, I'm encouraging students to go with one of those mission orgs one summer, and then come back to what we are doing after they get back, and help us with our idea of missions. Our ideas being that students progress as they get older (locality, cultural, etc) and that our long term goal is to send teams to help missionaries our church has already supported. Synergy between the adult church and our students is one of our goals, the local church is the light of the world.

3. Integrating Missions into a Young person’s Life
I would say that we need to integrate 'mission' into a young person's life. Their lives need to reflect the kind of passion about people that Jesus had. Enough that He died for them.

4. Empowering Youth to Minister in Missions
The word indigenous comes to mind. Students are the best ones to minister to students. I'm also reminded that worldview is a huge aspect of this value.

5. Involving Parents
It's fundamental. I can't imagine trying to do anything with students, missions or not, without involving parents. Duh.

6. Being Cross-culturally sensitive
A big one. It's part of why we require students that go out on teams go to prep meetings. One of the things we talk about is culture. That and the statistic that 75% of short term trips don't do any good and sometimes are a detriment to the host missionaries primary because of cultural issues.

7. Being Good Stewards of Resources
I don't care about this because I live in a really affluent area of the world. (You know I'm kidding.)

8. Working in Unity with Diverse Branches of the Church

Wow, good list huh? Anyone out there sign up?

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