Wednesday was the first real night we had with the youth. I think it went well. They are a pretty diverse group. Several of the children belong to families from the church, but most of them attend through the church bus ministry. We have attended several churches, but we have appreciated most those that have a bus ministry. Their reward is great, but their cost is high. They are not an easy ministry to operate and they typically don't bring any financial resources from the people that they serve. Geneva wanted to ride one of the church buses that went through her neighborhood, when she was young. She was not allowed to do so. Maybe this is part of the reason that we do have such a heart for the youth.
During our first evening, we wanted to get to know the kids. We took pictures of everyone. We made questionnaires for the kids to complete. Things were a little loud and there was a little bit of "testing the water", as far as our ability to maintain discipline went. So, we took half of the night to let the kids come up with their own rules, rules for leaders, and consequences for breaking rules. That went over well. I don't think they had ever been involved in "making their own rules". We got good participation and I believe that we will have better compliance, because of their involvement.
We plan to teach lessons through some unusual means. We are going to attempt to guide the youth to produce their own lessons. We plan to use digital video, music, etc. I've always heard that the best way to learn something is to have to teach it. I suspect that they will have a variety of beliefs (or unbeliefs) about our "topics" when they begin their production research. I think that through careful examination of the issues in a logical and biblically based manner, they will develop strong personal beliefs that they can defend readily.