There were two disciples who walked away from Jerusalem after Jesus’ death. On their journey, they talked about the challenges they faced in the world ...and about how they were going to live in this “new normal” ...they processed everything that happened and was happening but still couldn’t quite wrap their minds around it all.
They felt defeated. Their hearts were heavy. The future looked bleak. But defeat isn’t what Jesus had in mind for His Church.
Then the disciples met a stranger who entered into the conversation and changed everything.
Something changed in those seven miles between Emmaus and Jerusalem for those two disciples. Jesus entered in, and transformation happened. It started in defeat, and ended at the altar.
We, at Life Teen, know well that this is a tough season in ministry. Churches remain closed, Masses are small (if they are happening at all), and youth ministry isn’t able to be run like it used to.
But the journey is not over. Not even close.
To better serve your parish, we're shifting our focus in these next few months to offer you new resources, training, and support created explicitly for the current needs of our time. The resources below (except for “The Frontier”) are a part of all our subscription levels - you just need to log in.
Need some help with funds for your subscription? Reach out to Molly Anderson, and she will help you set up a custom fundraising page today. Several parishes have easily raised funds for great resources already; yours can be the next.
We know that it may be challenging to know where to start, so we’ve broken the journey down to seven-mile markers for you to follow, with the right resources and tools matched with each. Follow these seven miles, in order, to become part of the Emmaus initiative and re-invigorate youth ministry at your parish.
We've created a short assessment tool that will help you determine what resource offerings that we’ve made will help your parish the most during this time. Before you do anything, take the assessment.
Basecamp is a show created by youth ministers for youth ministers. We discuss the mountains and messes of ministry, sharing best practices, and encouraging each other. Get familiar with our previous episodes, listed by topic, and mark your calendar for our monthly show so you can join us live.
Prepare your team and your ministry for the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead as we navigate a new frontier of youth ministry. The Frontier is a virtual conference the features impactful keynotes, practical breakouts, and a lot of inspiration. It can be done anytime and anywhere with your entire team. Discounted registration is available for subscribing parishes.
We've created five different ministry models that will help you accompany teenagers, regardless of your current situation. Use your results from the assessment to choose the model that is best for your parish. (Didn’t take the assessment yet? Take it now.)
The five models we’ve created to help walk with you as you walk with teens are:
We’ve been working over the summer to adapt our Life Night, Edge Night, and Purpose resources to accommodate ministry in the “new normal.” You can use all of our recent resources in a live ministry setting with social distancing or a digital meet up that you host. Whatever your “new normal” looks like, our Life Support, Edge Support, and Purpose resources are ready for it.
The Mix is Life Teen’s new, “virtual” gathering for your parish community’s teens and core. With a new video offered each Sunday, The Mix will equip parishes with a toolbox of content and resources to plug in any day of the week and any time they choose. Bible studies, prayer experiences, interviews, interactive games, and more will be available to subscribing parishes to supplement all the additional resources Life Teen currently provides. The Mix is one more way for your teens to connect with faith in fun and unpredictable ways.
Suppose your parish can meet for Mass or other liturgical celebrations but cannot hold ministry outside of those liturgical experiences. In that case, our hybrid liturgical model will help you reach teens through experiences that happen immediately following Mass and are liturgically centered. We’ve compiled outlines for XLTs, a reconciliation service, and a period of extended worship, along with several talk outlines that will help you continue to reach teens, even if you have other restrictions in place.
If you have a group of adults that can meet with teenagers in small groups, we have resources to empower them to help form disciples. We offer three distinct small group models - Summit, Unleashed, and our newest offering, Connect Groups - that provide outlines, supplementary video, and small group questions to help core members accompany teenagers in small group settings. Additionally, our Connect Groups feature a seven-day prayer plan for whoever facilitates the group, helping to keep your leaders rooted in prayer and formed as disciples as they help form young people.
We believe that there is an excellent opportunity to connect parents and teenagers in the home during this time. Our Connect Group resource is available for parents to use in hosting groups of their teenagers’ friends as a small group in the home. We’ve also adapted this resource for a teen to use as a peer leader, allowing teens to gather their friends (digitally or in-person) to grow as disciples together.
Retreat ministry is a crucial part of helping teenagers encounter Jesus, but this year it may look a little bit different. Our virtual teen retreat allows you to gather in-person or digitally with teenagers, walk them through a weekend retreat with some great presenters, an opportunity for reflection, and plenty of time to meet in groups. Don’t skip a retreat this year - help your teens regain their vision.
If your assessment started you off with “The Mix” or “Connect Groups,” then you are already well on your way in this mile. If not, adding these two resources is a great way to start to grow your ministry even in a challenging time. Use Connect Groups and The Mix to empower parents and families to grow together or even help teenagers form small groups independently.
The journey continues even after the disciples return to Jerusalem, and so does ours. The Emmaus Initiative is our way of walking with you during a unique time, but it isn’t the end of our journey together. We know you will continue to do great youth ministry, and we will be with you every step of the way - whether it is at a camp in 2021, a conference, or just over Live Chat online - we look forward to continuing to walk with you as you walk with teens for many years to come.