Outreach & Witnessing

Sharing Children’s Books

Plan to visit a children’s hospital, children’s home, day care centre or Christian centre in your area. In advance, meet with the appropriate person at the location to plan your eventual visit with the youth group. Tell your youth group members about the upcoming visit and ask them to select one of their favourite books from childhood. At the location, they will be grouped with one or more children. They will read and discuss the book together. After the story time they will donate the books to the organization. Church members may donate books if necessary. Let the kids become familiar with the book ahead of time so they can read it with enthusiasm. Once the books are chosen, ask them to bring them to the youth group meeting and ask the following questions about each book: 1.) How are values presented? 2.) Who are the heroes in the story? What does the book teach us about heroes? What is the symbolism of the story? etc….

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Topsy Turkey

This Thanksgiving, don’t just collect Spam and generic green beans for Thanksgiving. Challenge your youth to collect one turkey for every member and donate it to the local food pantry or mission for Thanksgiving. Select leaders from each age group or Sunday School class and have them publicize and lead the effort. Make them responsible for X number of turkeys as they rally their peers and the adults of the church to donate turkeys. Publicize this effort in the local newspapers as well.

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I Believe, We Believe

This has become a HUGE thing in our city. On the first and third mondays of every month, students all across the city wear a navy-blue t-shirt with the words “I Believe” on the front. Every Monday this takes place you can walk though a middle school or high school and see hundreds of kids wearing these shirts. When people stop to ask, this is the opportunity to share the Gospel.

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Shopping Cart Scavenger Hunt

Send your kids on the most unforgettable shopping trip they’ve ever been on. And help the needy in your area at the same time. Contact a local food bank ahead of time to learn what items it needs most. Then make a “grocery list” of 15 to 20 of the items. Get permission to borrow shopping carts from a local grocery store. Form teams of no more than four. Give each team a shopping cart and a grocery list. Have teams go door-to-door in search of the items on the list. Award a pizza to the first team to return with its shopping completed. When everyone is back. have a discussion about giving. Use Deut 15:7-10; Prov 25:21; Matt 10:42; 22:34-40; Acts 2-:35; Romans 12:6-13; and 2 Cor 9:6-9 as discussion starters. Then go together to take the food kids collected to the local food bank.

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Youth Video Ministry

I came up with the idea that youth groups and their churches could run a small film club or ministry. In that, the kids would shoot, direct, act, edit, etc., they’re own films. This would be a great learning experience for them and would make their youth group more fun, exciting and meaningful. It would also help the kids connect with the rest of the church when they show their movie to their church, and also when other church members help in the making of their movie. The movies that the kids would make would of course be Christian movies that would help edify the church and preach the Gospel, the eternal message of Jesus! Youths could make documentaries, dramas, action/adventure movies, worship videos and much more. It could reach out to so many people and be used for many different things. The films could be used for fundraising, community outreaches, mission trips, documenting church activities such as retreats, or even interviewing different church members for they’re testimonies of how they came to know God. The uses and advantages for starting a film or video ministry with young people is endless. Also, the cost for such an undertaking is quite low. An inexpensive camcorder and a simple editing system is all one needs to start the ministry. For more info check out Warriors of Truth at http://www.geocities.com/~warrioroftruth or email me at warrioroftruth@webtv.net.

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Anyone Seen the Christ Child?

Around Christmas time, the youth or church bible studies get together and make cookie bags, or any gifts of such. Then go around to your local Fire-Stations, Emergency rooms, etc., and present the gift to them, and ask them “Have You seen the Christ Child?” and share with then the story of the candy cane or the Christmas story, and share about your church’s ministries. It’s a very effective and positive outreach.

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The Season Servants

Adapt this idea to fit your climate and the time of year. Gather a group of interested and dedicated youth and adults who want to reach out to others by caring for their yards. Offer your service to widows, single parents or needy families in your church or community. Set a day and time to come to their house. FALL: Bring rakes and leaf blowers to tidy yards. Bring brooms to sweep out gutters. WINTER: Bring shovels to clear off snowy sidewalks and rock salt to spread on icy steps and porches. SPRING: Plant flowers and wash windows. SUMMER: Mow and water lawns. Help each youth member and adult develop a green thumb he/she can be proud of. If families want to donate money to the team, give the money to an outreach or service organization.

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Trunk or Treat

On Hallowe’en night have people from your church decorate the trunks of their vehicles with decorations and candy. When the children come by, give them candy and a Gospel tract telling them how they can receive Jesus as their personal Savior. You may want to advertise Youth Events and the times of services.

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Musical Tour

Every year my high school youth group puts on a huge musical. We practice all year long. Every musical is complete with music, choreography, and a script with a great christian message. In the spring we perform at various local churches and for one week in the summer we tour out of state. We are reaching out to many different communities while learning a whole lot about ourselves and Christ in the process. I know that’s its changed my life

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Veteran’s Luncheon

Hold a luncheon to honor Veterans for their service to our country. Find out who in the church (or can be expanded to include your community) is a Veteran of the service. Several weeks before the event, send invitations inviting them and a guest to the luncheon. On the day of the luncheon, play military music or songs from the war era. For the menu, fix Hero sandwiches and have coleslaw or chips. Have the youth make the food and serve the food and drinks, and then clean up when done eating. Decorate the room you hold the luncheon in with patriotic decorations. Have people bring in pictures, old uniforms, etc. of their days in the service. Following the meal, have some of the youth perform a little program by singing a patriotic song, reciting a poem, etc. Have a time for the Veterans to tell a story of something they experienced while serving. Then close the luncheon by thanking our “heroes” for their service to our country and their part in helping make this nation free and great. This works well around Veteran’s Day. It is a great way to help bridge the gap between older adults and the youth. Keep in mind, that for many of the Veterans, this will be a very emotional time, but it will be something that they will always remember.

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