Tuesday, September 3, 2013

GFJ (Youth Group) This Fall

Hi, everyone,
Fall is right around the corner and, for me, that means the return to weekly youth group happenings which I so enjoy.  I want to write you all and keep you up-to-date on all the happenings for students and their families at Word of Life Lutheran Brethren Church.
We are very excited for this upcoming year of ministry and we look forward to the new 6th graders who are moving up to GFJ (Generation for Jesus) youth.  We have had a fun summer with many of your students and now it’s time to get things back to a deeper level.

I want mention some different opportunities that you and your students should consider as we approach the launch of our fall ministry happenings:

1.       Confirmation classes for grades 7 and 8 begin with a parent/student meeting on September 15th at 9:40 A.M. at church.  Class begins the following week, September 22.  Our heart for this ministry is that students be strengthened in Christ through these classes. Our pre-confirmation class, the 6th grade Sunday school class, is being lead by Bill Bigaouette and Jeff Mootz.  Our aim is that these classes serve our students by strengthening their understanding of God’s Word.  Both classes are asked to have a parent present on Sunday, September 15, to meet together with Bill and me and their student followed by a meeting of the individual classes.

2.       We will resume our deeper teaching through the Breakfast Club for those students seeking a comprehensive Bible study.  We will continue examining “The Story” which has been taking us chronologically through a variety of Biblical stories and how they relate to each of us.  Like we did last year, we will be meeting twice a month on Wednesday mornings at 7:00 A.M. beginning early October at our (Pastor Mark & Wendy Johannesen) home for breakfast.  There will be one change:  after we watch the video, we will split into two student-led small groups.

3.       Please consider this new opportunity:   Lauren McGraw will lead a high school Bible study, at least though the fall season.  

4.       During the year, our leadership team will be meeting about every six weeks to evaluate and strengthen what we do.  In addition, we would welcome the presence of any high school-age student if they would like to give feedback at those meetings.  Please watch for details regarding the times of these meetings.

Youth Group Kick-off Party and Teaching Plans for 2013-2014:  
On September 18th youth group begins meeting regularly with Junior High meeting from 6:00 until 7:15 and Senior High gathering from 7:30 until 9:00 P.M.  We are excited to be starting Generation for Jesus again. Our theme for this year is the word “BROKEN.” 

My hope is that we teach about being broken from three different angles throughout the year.
-               We live in a broken world.
-               We each have our own brokenness.
-                Jesus was broken for us.

During the year we aim to teach in three (3) to four (4) week-long series.  Here is a sampling of topics we plan to cover this year:  Self-esteem, money, the lives of five (5) more disciples, spiritual gifts, world religions and cults, lessons from the Old Testament.

Each night at youth group I offer a teaching time, followed by a small group discussion, games, and a snack.  Over the summer our leadership team has been meeting in preparation for this year and I am excited to work with them.

Missions Trip to Mexico:
For the third year in a row, we are participating with Borderless Midwest for the Mexico Mission Trip.  Go to www.borderlessmidwest.com for more details.  The trip is April 10 until April 18, 2014.  There will be a parent and student meeting on Wednesday, September 25th at 7:30 P.M.  during Senior High Youth Group to talk through this year’s trip.  Any student in 8th grade and up is welcome to attend.  At this meeting we will offer for families to host the Wednesday night family dinners and fill the fall schedule.  Hosting the family dinners has been a great fundraiser.

Digital Age Concert at LSH:
“The Digital Age” will be performing a concert at the Le Sueur-Henderson High School on October 30th at 7:00 P.M.  Individual tickets cost $9 and all group sales purchased after September 15, cost $7.   But all orders purchased before September 15, cost just $6 per ticket. We want to invite as many students as possible to it to hear the gospel and some great music.  If you would like to purchase tickets, please visit the Lighthouse Christian Bookstore in Mankato and Corner Drug in Le Sueur or here at Word of Life Church.  For more information, go to www.lshchurches.org

Upcoming Events:
-          Confirmation Orientation – September 15th

-          Youth group Kick-Off Party – September 18th  https://www.facebook.com/events/563068980396081/

-          See You at the Pole – September 25th

-          Mexico Mission trip meeting at September 25th

-          Paintball – October 6th https://www.facebook.com/events/540146949403660/?ref=2

-          Where’s Waldo – October 26th https://www.facebook.com/events/218627831633068/

-          Digital Age Concert – October 30th

-          Volunteer at the Operation Christmas Child Warehouse – November 27th and November 30th

-          Planet Wisdom  - December 6th  and 7th

-          Senior High Winter Weekend - February 14-16

-          Confirmation Camp – March 7-9

Youth group Accounts and fundraisers:
Every student who has done at least one fundraiser has an account with us that can be used to fund any event.  I am enclosing a copy of the most recent balances in each account as you consider different events for this upcoming year.  There is a form in the church office and on the church website that must be completed to access these funds.
During the school year we will offer a number of fundraisers.  Some fundraisers are meant just for our Mexico mission trip and other fundraisers can used by everyone.  Please feel free to pass any ideas along.

If you use gas, I would encourage you to buy gas cards from us.  Here is what you will earn:
-          5% on Holiday gas cards
-          10% on Kwik Trip gas cards

            Maybe that doesn’t sound like much, but it adds up very fast.  We will be doing these fundraisers, at least for the next year.

2013-14 Release form:
Please complete the enclosed release form for each student who will be participating in our youth group during the upcoming school year.

Thanks very much for the opportunity to serve you and your students.

Pastor Mark
Cell – 952-255-9572

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