Faith and Adolescence
Being a teenager is challenging. It always has been but arguably more so these days. There’s so much going on ‘on the inside’ for all teenagers and now we have what I think is the most challenging set of issues ‘on the outside’ that I can recall in my lifetime. I know so many of you are concerned about this.
The church in NZ (actually in most of the Western World) has struggled to keep our teens who have grown up in Christian homes connected to their christian faith…….to their roots. The sad commentary we constantly read and hear is when youngsters leave home they also leave faith……..in their droves.
As a Christian leader (and a Grandfather) I am deeply troubled by this. We all know that if kids can stay connected to their Christian faith then by-and-large they will fare much better in life. Adolescence is a unique stage of life and needs a unique set of skills to engage our teens with Christian faith. Because of this I reached out to Dr Crystal Kirgiss and asked if she would come on down to NZ and speak into this situation. I have good news….she has agreed to come and further her husband Mark who is a seasoned youth leader/mentor/director is coming as well.
So from the 10th -19th May next year I am hosting these guys. As at writing I am still working on the itinerary but I can confirm we will be in Auckland, Hamilton and Wellington and probably Dunedin and Christchurch. Within the next 2-3 weeks I hope to have finalised their itineraries. In the meantime if you jump onto our website here you will see both Crystal’s and Mark’s Bio’s and a short vid of Crystal doing a teaching back in January this year on ‘Reading The Bible with Students’.
The focus of their speaking will be on ‘engaging teenagers to the Bible and faith’. They will be speaking to Pastors, Youth Pastors, Children and Family Pastors, parents and of course teenagers. Crystal has a very rich background as an academic, author, gifted speaker and practitioner. You can learn more about her here.
If you are interested to host the Kirgiss’s for a meeting or seminar then please get in touch with us asap.
Alan Vink is currently the Executive Director for LeadershipWorx. Prior to this role he has been the Executive Director of Willow Creek Association NZ (WillowNZ), a Baptist pastor (23 years), Bible College teacher, and church consultant.