Growing Young

In the Spring of 2023 a small team of people from our congregation began working on ways to better minister to our families and families of our communities. The Growing Young Team has been using two books as our guide in this process: Sustainable Youth Ministry by Mark DeVries and Growing Young by Kara Powell, Jake Mulder, and Brad Griffin.

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Growing Young Team:

Doug Johnson, Director of Youth and Family Ministries
Christine Camrud
Mark Davis
Anna McLeod
Margaret Santjer
Juliet Zhang

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Current Opportunities:

Growing Young Assessment – early 2024

Thank you to all who completed Growing Young (GY) assessment. If you would like to see the results, contact Director of Youth and Family Ministries Doug Johnson, doug@salc.church. The Team does want to lift up the following:

  • We had 115 responses!
    • This is approximately 80% of our average worship attendance
    • The people from Fuller seminary suggest a minimum of 25-50%
    • We crushed it!
  • The overwhelming response from the congregation means that people care about this topic!
  • People cared enough to be honest and critical.
    • Different age groups had different responses and that’s okay, in fact it is a good thing
  • The Spirit is moving!
    • People see a need for change.
    • Seeds are being planted for change by the Spirit
      • Not just with the assessment but with all the hard work that is happening in our congregation, our cluster, and beyond

Please do not hesitate to reach out to anyone on the Growing Young Team if you have questions or would like to discuss the results.

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Background:

In the spring of 2023 we announced that a small team of people from our congregation was working on ways to better minister to our families and families of our communities. We have been using two books as our guide in this process: Sustainable Youth Ministry by Mark DeVries and Growing Young by Kara Powell, Jake Mulder, and Brad Griffin. Sustainable Youth Ministry provides an incredible guide and framework on how to build a ministry for the long term. Using the imagery of building a house the book sets forth processes and systems on how to build sustainable, healthy, and long-term children, youth, and family ministry. Growing Young provides six core commitments that the authors recommend congregations follow that have proven effective if they want to “grow young,” meaning prioritizing young people and families. This book brings together over 10,000 hours of research alongside countless stories of how congregations have new life (for all ages, not just young families) through the six core commitments. Using these books as a guide we have been learning and growing. We also have been having conversations with our families to try and better understand where we are. During that time, two things happened. First, we realized that there was a lot more learning about ourselves and our congregation that we need to do. Second, Fuller Seminary and the Fuller Youth Institute – the people responsible for the research in Growing Young – put out new resources, specifically the Growing Young Assessment. The team, in conversation with the Discipleship Ministries Committee and Council, decided that there was a lot of value in having our congregation do the assessment. We are excited to see what the results are of this assessment and are happy to help you with any questions that you may have. Please reach out to any of the team members if you have any questions.

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