Archives by: Jason Young

Underground Church

To the catacombs! This is part adventure game, part worship and celebration. Your kids’ first task of the evening event is to elude the secret police of a corrupt, anti‑Christian government, and locate safe houses run by the Christian underground. Then they travel to the meeting house, a secret secluded location for celebration and worship, with reminders of what ancient and modern Christians have endured in order to meet and worship together.
Get lots of people from church or the community involved. The evening requires planners, contacts, safe house owners, secret police, and worship-service organizers. (Delegate!) For practical safety reasons this game must be carried out in a carefully designated area, defined clearly on a map carried by all participants. Choose a neighborhood where traffic is minimal.
The details in the adventure game as explained below can be changed to suit your own community and group. Use more or fewer clues, arm the secret police with other “weapons,” etc. Make it your own event.

Background
The setting is a police state where all Christian gatherings are outlawed. However, the religious underground has begun a resistance movement to protect and encourage believers. They have organized a secret meeting of Christians in their neighborhood.
Thanks to old church membership lists, all believers have been organized into cell groups. For their own protection, they know the identities of neither their own cell members nor those in other cells.
On the event night they will locate their own cell’s safe house and be introduced to other cell members. Before the evening is over, they will meet with the other cell members for worship and mutual encouragement.
A week before the event, underground leaders circulate special ID cards and bracelets to identify all believers. ID cards are color coded by cell group with a small colored dot. Included with them is a map with the first of four clues that eventually lead to the safe house for a particular cell group.

The Task of Underground Members
On the night of the event—armed with color-coded ID bracelet, map, and the first clue—kids will get their next three clues from three contacts: two street persons and a store owner/manager/clerk. Participants must move about in groups of three or four. Groups smaller or larger than that are strictly forbidden.
When players approach someone they suspect is a contact, they say the underground passwords, “Do you have any old newspapers to donate?” True contacts respond, “Come walk on the water.” Contacts check kids IDs, because they can only give clues to students with their color.
The fourth and final clue takes the underground members to their safe house where they’ll be blindfolded and driven to the secret gathering at the meeting house.
Believers need a total of four dots on their ID card to get into the safe house. The bracelet identifies participants to contacts and other believers. No one is allowed into a safe house without a bracelet.
As they’re searching for contacts and clues, they must also elude the secret police, who are intent on breaking up the resistance movement and discovering the members of the underground. They are everywhere on the night of the event, and they have no identifying signs except that they are armed with Super Soakers. When the secret police catch believers, they remove their bracelets, blindfold them, and take them to prison.

Prison
Prison is a darkened room at the church. While sitting in the darkened room, prisoners hear sounds of interrogation, torture, and guns firing blanks. (Use good judgment as to how much realism is appropriate for your group.) From time to time the secret police remove one prisoner from the room and take them to another darkened room, leaving the people in the first room wondering where they are.
In the end, underground commandos rescue their captured fellow believers and take them to the meeting house, but the commandos act as if not everyone got out alive. Those who died can be memorialized at the worship service. You might make the fatal circumstances of these martyrs resemble those of actual martyrs killed by modern day repressive governments.

Adults
**–Christian
*–Non-Christian
***–Prison Guard
#–Cult Church Leader
##–Underground Church Leader

* Your character is to deceive the kids. If you get them to say any word dealing with Christianity ( God, Jesus, Salvation etc.) You take them to the jail. And continue on your business. Act as if you are a Christian and develop your own character. The more you get into this the more fun it is!!! Remember that Christianity is outlawed in your country and that you are very suspicious of Christian activity. Also look for the stamp on their hand, if they have it they are safe otherwise question them. You will be notified where the jail is so that you can take them there. You may chase the kids if they do not agree to go with you but only if you have caught them practicing Christian activity. The stamp is a symbol of your country’s cult.

**Your objective is to lead the kids to the underground church without being obvious. Your role is crucial because you cannot be too easy to realize that you are a Christian. Use code words if possible. Do not stand out! Blend in. Remember that you are an undercover missionary and that if you are noticed you will face consequences as well.

***Your objective is to be in control of the prison and you must be mean and rude and brutal to the Christian kids. Remember that in you country that accused of Christian activity will receive death so keep that in your character. You really want to affect the kids it is a crucial part in the outlook of underground church. DO NOT let kids be smart-alecky, or try to escape, or let them pray, or sing songs. Some may cry. Try to give them the real affect of missions in third world countries. If other kids walk by you may shout out phrases such as “ what you want in” “ what are you looking at?”

#Your objective is to deceive kids into getting them to put the stamp on their hands. Sing songs, read verses but change them a bit. Seem that you are the real church. Give the kids a stamp and tell them they will be safe with it. Become a cult use your guitar. The more deceiving the better. Try to send them to other non-Christians. The stamp is a symbol of your country’s cult.

## You are the real Christian leader if you get students get them to fill out the devotional cards. You may have music playing in your room and you can have them pray if you would like and even let the kids tell you about the experience.

!!!The game will only be around 15 minutes so keep track on your watch. We are planning to explain the game to the kids and lets you get setup and focused. Remember to spread out and be in character. This game has a great impact if you do it right and really get involved. If you lose your character by talking to the kids try to get out of it by leading them to someone on your side and then get refocused. The kids will become serious if you are and their mood will change and it should become a reality. At the end of the game you will be notified and we will have a short debriefing session and devotion open to anyone who will talk. You should be given a map so that you can know where everything is Pray that God will speak to the kids through this activity it can be very powerful. Pray that God will help you to become really involved. The kids should be in pairs but they may split up. Please read everyone’s role so that you will know what is going on.

Cell Groups

Assign pairs or triple depending upon the number of youth playing

****GIVE THIS SAMPLE MEMO TO YOUR STUDENTS

Attention!!!

You are now in a third world country. Your religion (Christianity) is not allowed in this country and the consequences for practicing it is death. But there is hope, there are some underground missionaries that can lead you to the underground church where you can worship God freely and in secret. But be aware there are deceivers and liars that will get you into trouble and you will be sentenced to prison. Where you will be captive for the remainder of the game. You must stay with your partner missionary because they are the only ones you can trust. If one is taken away so is the other. Be careful of what you say and hear for it can get you into a lot of trouble. Good Luck and find the underground church!

Rules
–You must stay with your partner
–You cannot go with other cell groups
–If you are sentenced to jail you must go there
— Find the underground Church

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