Blog/Faith

Grateful for a new Edge Support Box

Your brand new Edge Support Box is now live online and on its way to your parish. We are excited to share these resources to support you in your ministry to middle schoolers!

In this latest box, you will receive an Edge Small Group Guide, Retreat Series, Core Team Training Guide, Issue Night, Social Night, environment images, videos, handouts, Parent Letters, Spotify playlists, Seriously God?, Messiah– Stories of Advent, Springtide Research Institute access code, and some fun items. We are grateful to share these with you.

The new Small Group Guide, 40, is a series on Lent. The content emphasizes the powerful role of Lent in both the liturgical life of the Church and in personal spiritual development as a focused opportunity for penance, preparation, and conversion. Each Edge Night of the series is titled numerically to call attention to different components of the season. This 40 series is sure to prepare your middle school youth and core team for a transformative Lent and Easter celebration. We recommend using this resource in the spring of 2022.

You will also receive our new Retreat Series Mixtape. Through this retreat, youth will encounter the Bible in a new, more profound way by exploring the Old and New Testaments and discovering how God’s Word written in the past is just as good, true, and beautiful today. The mixtape theme illustrates how the books of the Bible are written by different authors, much like how a mixtape contains songs by various artists. Yet, God is the ultimate curator of – and inspiration behind – the whole work. The Retreat Series includes video introductions on our website for each Gather game and sample schedules for a traditional weekend-away retreat, a day retreat, or four Edge Nights.

Name, Grade, and Favorite Ice Cream is a Core Team Training Guide that equips core members with the tools to be effective, empathetic, and committed small group leaders for middle school youth. Topics covered include creating welcoming small group environments, leading constructive discussions, and managing behavior. This guide also provides team building and prayer opportunities, essential for refreshing and renewing your core team. We recommend implementing this series in the summer of 2022 as a weekend-away retreat, a day training session, or four training sessions to prepare for your fall semester.

Check out the November 2021 USB drive for an Edge Issue Night and Edge Social Night. The “Holy Humor” Issue Night explores humor in a fun comedy club setting as a gift from God that can strengthen social connections and relieve stress. Unfortunately, humor is also too often used to divide and marginalize. Middle school youth will be challenged to look at their use of humor and encouraged to share it joyfully. “Top Gun Water Games” is a summertime Edge Social Night that will bring fun and fellowship to your Edge program. Be sure to check out the Flocknote library for a templated invitation.

The USB drive also contains branded environment images for these resources, helpful videos for preparing the teaching for each session, downloadable handouts, and Parent Letters (in English and Spanish) to supplement each Edge Night. And because we know youth ministers are busy, these Parent Letters are also preloaded to Flocknote. Also, don’t forget to check out Spotify for playlists to set the tone for your Edge Nights and retreat.

This Edge box also contains two books. Seriously, God? by Fr. Michael White and Tom Corcoran is a news release about the denial, doubt, and betrayal we experience when facing hardship, pain, and grief. The authors encourage leaning into feelings and using life’s circumstances as a chance to learn more about God. This book contains helpful biblical perspectives for your ongoing formation and to share with youth and parents wrestling with big questions. You will also receive Messiah– Stories of Advent from Life Teen. This book is a gift for you as a youth minister to pray through the Advent season.

There are some other fun surprises in your box and a special access code for parishes subscribed to Life Teen that will grant access to the new research published by Springtide research referenced in the Core Team Training Guide.

This is the time of year when we collectively focus on gratitude. As your Edge Support Coordinator, I am grateful for you and your commitment to walking with the middle school youth in your parish. Life Teen exists to empower and equip you to lead teens closer to Christ, so I’d love to know how we did with these November 2021 resources. You can contact me directly or respond through our follow-up survey.

Contact me with your questions or feedback. Reach out if you want to learn more about our dynamic Edge middle school program to introduce it to your parish. We are here to serve and support you!

Photo by Namroud Gorguis on Unsplash

About the Author

Jill Bagshaw

Jill fell in love with the Church through young men and music, which has provided a fantastic life journey with the most reliable companion. Jill has served as a Music Minister in the Diocese of Phoenix for more years than she can imagine and currently serves as the Edge Support Coordinator for Life Teen. Jill has a degree in Music Therapy and is working on a duel Master in Pastoral Studies and Master of Business Administration. Jill and her husband, Scott, are raising three terrific teenagers in Scottsdale, AZ.

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