Fellowship / Friendship

Christmas Gift-Away

During the Christmas season this year, have your youth group sponsor a Christmas gift list for young children in a nearby hospital, orphanage, detention centre, or disadvantaged apartment complex or neighbourhood. On a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, 5 weeks before Christmas, have the youth group canvas one of these groups of children and learn what -personal- gifts they’d appreciate. If your focus is on children in a hospital or orphanage, have the kids ask the staff for suggestions for each child. Have kids set up a Christmas tree in the entry area of the church building. Place tags on the tree that describe each gift the group needs. Church members can review the the tags, choose a gift they will bring and place it with the tag under the tree. Encourage church members to purchase the suggested gifts so members of your group can experience giving something meaningful to another person.

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Hoot ‘N’ Holler

A Hoot’n Holler is simply a monthly afterglow. Usually held the last Sunday night of the month. After the evening service all the youth meet in the fellowship hall. The music is blasting and the food is waiting. Each month we have a different theme (i.e. Extreme Water Fight). This gives our youth an opportunity to bring their unsaved friends, who may not have ordinarily come to church. It is also a great way to celebrate the birthdays of your youth each month.

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Men’s Bake-Off

This is a great after the evening service fellowship. Have the men/boys bake their favorite dessert. Bring it to church. Select judges to judge the desserts. Then the desserts are eaten by all. We thought of all kinds of catagories so everyone got a blue as well as funny certificate.

We had special rules:
1. It had to be made by the men
2. The girls/women could explain the recipe or tell them how to mix or measure only.
3. The men had to do all their own clean up.

We gave a ribbon for the best use of melted marshmallows, best use of cherries & chocolate, best warm dessert turned cold (these are just examples).

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Mystery Road Trip

We have devised a fun outreach event called Mystery Road Trip. Here you plan a road trip, but every aspect of the trip is unexpected, silly, and a complete mystery for your youth. Since I have a rural background, I take my city kids to rural places and have them do rural tasks. They seem to really enjoy it. The travel time is a good way for the kids to connect with you and each other. It is also an easy event to invite unchurched kids to.

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Jogging Fellowship

Good for some fellowship outside of the church. Find guys who are interested in keeping in shape (particularly jogging) and start out by running to one boy’s house, and having him run with you. Then run together to other houses till you have reached all of the participants’ homes. 5-8 guys should be enough. While running together, great conversations can develop. Then you gradually run each other home (you can stop for refreshments as you go if you like). The first who is dropped off, is the one who was picked up first, The last one to go home is the one who joined the group last.

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Wacked Out Parties

Have a party for some unusual holidays. For example: January (Louisiana Yam Supper Season), February (6-9th: Annual Camel Wrestling Competition in Yenipazar, Turkey), March (6-11: National Procrastination Week; 15: Buzzard Day in Hinkley, Ohio), April (6-15: National Artichoke Week), May (18-27: International Pickle Week), June (4-10: Girl Watching Week; 17 National Hollering Contest in Dunn, N.C.), July (2: Stone Skipping and Ge-Plunking Open Tournament at Mackinac Island), August (Sandwich Month; 11-12 Hobo Convention in Britt, Iowa), September (2: Moustache Day; 24-30: National Dog Week), October (5-14: National Macaroni Week), November (23-Jan1: National Indigestion Season), December (16: Man Will Never Fly Memorial Day)

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Interaction Cards

Getting kids to talk with one another is often difficult. To get kids to interact, I have developed four levels of interaction cards (beginner to spiritual fellowhip) that first give hints at better communication then pose questions for each of the members of a pair. (the cards are included below)

To start, distribute beginner level cards to students who were born on an even day of the month. Have them go sit beside someone who does not have a card and follow the instructions on the cards for less than three minutes.

Next, get the groups attention and have them either progress to an “intermediate card” with their partner or move beside someone they don’t know really well.

This is always a good low key ice breaker that you can use every three months or so. Try it with parents as well. You may be surprised at how much they enjoy it!

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BEGINNER
For The Listener
Read the question to your friend.
Be warm. Make eye contact.
Let them speak. Encourage them to add more
Ask questions that look for more details
Thank your friend for being open with you.

For the Speaker
Be as open as possible. Imagine you have known this person for years. Speak in full sentences and give as much detail as possible. Take your time and enjoy the interest they are showing in you.

The Questions
1. Give your life story in about one minute. What were the high and low points?
2. Describe your favorite movie. Why did you like it so much?
3. Describe your family members. What do you like and dislike about each?
4. Describe your bedroom in detail. What do you think it says about your personality?

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INTERMEDIATE
For The Listener
Read the question to your friend.
Be warm. Make eye contact.
Let them speak. Encourage them to add more
Ask questions that look for more details
Thank your friend for being open with you.

For the Speaker
Be as open as possible. Imagine you have known this person for years. Speak in full sentences and give as much detail as possible. Take your time and enjoy the interest they are showing in you.

The Questions
Describe the best day of your life in detail. Try to describe your feelings too.
Describe your most embarrassing moment. How did you get over it?
If you could be any place in the world where would you be? What would you do there?
Describe the 5 best things in your life and the five worst things in your life .

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ADVANCED
For The Listener
Read the question to your friend.
Be warm. Make eye contact.
Let them speak. Encourage them to add more
Ask questions that look for more details
Thank your friend for being open with you.

For the Speaker
Be as open as possible. Imagine you have known this person for years. Speak in full sentences and give as much detail as possible. Take your time and enjoy the interest they are showing in you.

The Questions
When was the last time your cried? Describe the circumstances in detail
What are the biggest regrets in your life? If you could change things what would you do?
Describe three things that scare you? How do you deal with your fears?
As honestly as possible describe your strengths and weaknesses?
When you are alone how do you feel? What do you think about? What do you do?
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SPIRITUAL FELLOWSHIP
For The Listener
Read the question to your friend.
Be warm. Make eye contact.
Let them speak. Encourage them to add more
Ask questions that look for more details
Thank your friend for being open with you.

For the Speaker
Be as open as possible. Imagine you have known this person for years. Speak in full sentences and give as much detail as possible. Take your time and enjoy the interest they are showing in you.

The Questions
Describe a time you gave in to temptation. Explain why you struggle in this area.
Describe the story of your faith. What has happened in your relationship to Jesus?
Describe a time in your life when you doubted. What do you struggle with now?
Talk about you and prayer. When do you pray? What do you pray about?
Describe the last time you lost your temper? What makes you angry? Why?

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Affirm Me

I still have the sheet in my warm fuzzy file. All it says on the top is AFFIRM ME. It sounds like a pretty blunt cry for affection, but it came from an activity run on a retreat with Bible College students years ago.

This is much like the affirmation activity where students write affirming statements on each others backs but in this instants students are to list the Fruit of the Spirit that they see exhibited in the lives of that student. You can either put the sheets up with the students name on a wall during a retreat and at any time the students can go by and indicate the fruit they see exhibited. It is always more fun to tape it to each others backs. As the leader you should join in as well and some time when you feel like throwing in the towell put out your affirmation sheet and you may want to wait a few more weeks.

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Pass the Plate

All sit in a circle and each person is handed a paper plate and a coloured pen. Let youth know week beforehand to bring stationary from school if necessary. Each person writes their name in the center of the paper plate and then it is passed to the person next to them. Every one is instructed to write something good and encouraging about that person who’s name is on the plate they have. Keep on passing plates around the circle until each person has their plate back.

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Youth Do Lunch

Most people go out to lunch on Sunday after service. Create a great time of unity and fellowship by scheduling a monthly “youth do lunch.” Go to a variety of restaurants and learn of their country’s background. This works well as you can also teach about missions. Take 5-10 youth each time so everyone has an opportunity. Smaller groups allow for you to get to know them better.

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