My little girl growin up

goofy eden (3 of 4)

Originally uploaded by pastorchrisbishop

So we were talking about having a beard-a-thon to raise some money for youth group the other week. Daniel was talking a big game, but he didn’t know Eden was in the mix. Looks like she will be taking home gold with no contest from the others. 🙂
Sorry Dan…maybe next year

New additions to the youth room

This weekend brought about a couple of changes to the youth room in as we prepare for a new program that i am really excited about.  We brought in a new chair and couch thinks to a member of the congregation.  Also, we were given 5 computers a little while ago.  Three of the comps are making their home in the youth/family ministry space.  I have done a little bit to set them up.  They are also going to be used for the online survey during then next couple of weeks.  Finally, my dad found an old router that he was not using because it was not playing nice with his Mac.  Man I am excited about the new additions.

Here are a couple of pics. of the computers and the new furniture. 

Continue reading “New additions to the youth room”

boo at the zoo

boo at the zoo

Originally uploaded by pastorchrisbishop

Last night we went to Boo At the Zoo at the national zoo in DC. Katie, her mom, Eden and I went and had a great time trick or treating at the zoo.

There were tons of places where we got candy, toys and learned about what animals do at night. there were so many cool costumes. this is something that I know is going to be fun for years to come.

Rethinking:YM: Are We Playing It Safe?

My old ritual, as youth group would wrap-up on Sunday evenings and the young’ns were heading home, was to say to them “Be Safe.” Isn’t that a strange way to say goodbye? Of course, all I meant was “Have a good week and come back in one piece” but is that really the best advice we have to give to our youth? They live in a world of school violence, AIDS, drugs, computer predators, terrorism. Is being safe all it’s cracked up to be? What about when it comes to our faith? Is teaching our youth to “play it safe” our best option? Probably not, but are we willing to lead youth ministries that encourage real risk?

One of my favorite passages in C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe finds the young protagonists chatting with Mr.. and Mrs.. Beaver. The Beavers are trying to describe Aslan, the Lion (a metaphorical stand-in for Christ in the story). Lucy, taken aback by the notion of meeting a lion, asks, “But is he safe?” Mr. Beaver replies. “Safe? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t. But he’s good.”

Do our youth ministries too often offer a Jesus who is “safe?” A Jesus who asks little of us beyond giving intellectual assent to a list of religious beliefs? A Jesus who says, “Just agree that I’m your Lord and Savior and then I’ll leave you alone to your video game nights and your road trips and your skateboard parks?” We know that for the early church, following Jesus was not just about committing to a list of do’s and dont’s or pledging allegiance to religious dogma. For them following Jesus meant walking through life the way he walked, living and loving as he lived and loved. Theologian Paul Tillich describes this as making the spirit of Christ a reality by “participating in his very being.” In other words, following Christ is not primarily about abstract belief but about a way of being in the world.

And if we dared to do this in our youth ministry, we’d better be prepared for trouble. Because following Jesus with our youth — really following Jesus — will be anything but safe. Because here is what it would look like:

Read the full article here:

RETHINKING YOUTH MINISTRY: Are We Playing It Safe in Youth Ministry?

Bummer for the YM community


Marco is one of the most influential youth workers I have come across.  Recently he wrote the book youth ministry 3.0.  this has been a book that has provided me with some great reflection about the way that i am currently in ministry. 

Youth Specialties let him go as a result of a differing opinion as to where Zondervan would like to see youth specialties go.  I am anxious for what this means for youth specialties.  Yet, I know that Marko is going to find fruitful ministry along the next chapter of his faith journey. 

I am excited to see where God leads Marko and he is my my prayers. 

YS removes Marco from his position as the president of Youth Specialties.  The full Youth Specialties press release is right here.

Book Review: Unleashing God’s Word

As i have been thinking about the books that i have found useful there has been a torrent of books that i have thought about as I have begun to try and resource youth workers with some of the better youth ministry books. 

Unleashing God’s Word in youth ministry had been a really great resource for me in developing studies for youth, young adults, and adult study.  Also Shafer has some really great and unique thinking about ways that we can invite students to inductively study God’s word.  He outlines a number of different ways to read through scripture so that you can digest the text layer by layer. 

He also has a number of different suggestions for a scope plan so that you are not just studying the parts of scripture you or youth group prefers. 

Barry also has put the tools into practice through a collection of inductive studies.  I have the one he did on the gospel of John and it is very good.  I am always skeptical when there is a book about how to study the Bible because I tend to look for the author’s hidden agenda or theology. 

I would suggest that you check out this great resource. 

Final Grade: A