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Summit reflection video for Palm Sunday with Joel Stepanek
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by Joel Stepanek
I sat on the floor of my college apartment and started crying. I was an assistant youth minister at the time but was working full-time to fill in for the youth ministry coordinator as she was out on maternity leave. The other assistant youth minister and I spent the past […]
When I entered youth ministry as a volunteer, I thought it was amazing. In hindsight, I think I realize why I thought that: I had a set group of teenagers that I ministered to every single week I never was around on Monday morning to hear about what was broken […]
Too many of us are hanging out in the boat of our ministry and our discipleship. What would you do if you decided that, for the next year, you were going to ditch the boat and step out onto that water? What if you took the adventure of discipleship seriously, took off the water wings, and decided to make things happen?
I don’t know if someone spoke those words to you, but they are powerful. They are a statement of support. They say, “Regardless of how bad you get, how far you go, I’m standing by you.” In ministry, we have those moments. Whether it’s that one Core Member you need […]
I am blessed in a lot of ways. I don’t always realize it, but in the quiet moments when I think about what God does in my life I realize how little I deserve it. One of the most amazing parts of what I do with Life Teen is that […]
Middle school was the worst! It was an awkward time of voice changes (for guys), odd height differentials (for girls), and pimples (for everybody). For me, it was one of the first times I can remember really wanting to be liked and accepted. Sure, in elementary school I wanted to […]
As an elementary school student, I was a people pleaser and a teacher’s pet. I always wanted to be the first one with the right answer. I thrived with the affirmation that a teacher would give me when I got it right. I covered my desk with the gold stars […]
Our God makes the dead rise. It isn’t an abstract thought or concept. It isn’t a philosophical metaphor. The readings today (1 KGS 17:17-24, GAL 1:11-19, LK 7:11-17) center around one of the defining qualities of God – He breathes life into what was once lifeless. He animates what was still. Our God […]
I walked into the retreat almost completely defeated. As I shared with my small group, people’s faces went from empathetic to confused as I shared: Things this year have been amazing. We see more and more teens every week. We have a great peer group. We built a brand new […]
Where are you looking? This past weekend, depending on the part of the world where you live, you either heard readings from the 7th Sunday of Easter (Jn 17:20-26) or the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord (Lk 24:46-53). Regardless of what you heard – both of the first readings […]