YOUTH MINISTRY at Leesburg UMC
(Youth Group)

LUMC’s Youth Group encompasses 6th through 12th grades, though the different age groups are generally separated for most activities. We make an effort to maintain a balanced Youth Program, through which tweens and teens are given exposure to many facets of the Christian life. As each person has different gifts, talents and interests, we hope to reach youth and guide them in developing their relationship with God using their own strengths, while challenging them to test their comfort zones. The goals are to develop and strengthen each individual’s relationship with God and also to prepare them for participation in the church as adults.

While many programs and activities are developed to fit into more than one of the categories below, so some may be listed in multiple places. Throughout a given year, youth can expect to grow in following areas:

Fellowship: While on the surface, fellowship is often seen as extra and unnecessary, it is vital to maintaining their interest in the group. Youth are extremely social beings, and since we are a church with kids from several schools, we must make a deliberate effort to establish and maintain friendships within the group. Activities that exist primarily for social purposes include: Fall Kick-off Events, most Summer activities, Sunday evening youth group, Corn Maize, Christmas Party, Movie Night, Lock-in, Ski Trip and Rafting Trip.

Discipleship: The simple definition for discipleship is “embracing the teachings of another (in this case, Jesus Christ).” Of course, to embrace teachings, one has to learn those teachings. Discipleship opportunities are woven into most programs and activities, those which exist primarily for this purpose include: The Gallery (Youth Worship), Confirmation, All Retreats (Fall Retreats, Confirmations, Winter Retreat), Youth Group and most programs which fall under “ministry.”

Worship: Worship is an important element to the Christian life. Most youth however, find worship to be boring and irrelevant. Youth centered and youth led worship helps to bridge them into adult worship. Youth are exposed to different forms of worship on all of the retreats (SPY, Fall Retreats, Confirmation Retreat, Winter Retreat). The Gallery is LUMC’s Youth Group youth worship. Many familiar components of worship are included, along with some elements that are designed specifically to engage youth in worship. There are about a dozen Sundays throughout the year, when youth are encouraged to attend the regular church worship services. This is vital to their development as mature Christians, as they watch others – especially their parents – worship.

Ministry: Serving the poor is often seen as the cornerstone of the Christian faith. Part of being a follower of Christ, is to serve Him by helping His people who need His love through meeting physical needs. We not only have activities that serve the poor, but youth are taught about the circumstances that often cause others to suffer. They are also taught to respect others and that we do this out of service to our God, not simply to feel better about ourselves. Programs and activities which are primarily focused on serving the poor include: 30 Hour Famine, TOP (Teens Opposing Poverty, Alternative Gift Fair, Holiday Coalition, SPY (mission trip).

Leadership Development: Serving on the Youth Council gives youth the opportunity to speak for themselves and shape the youth ministry and programs into what they need. It also gives them the chance to take on leadership positions and serve on church committees. Those who play in the Youth Band, also learn about leading worship –not just playing in a band. On many retreats, the older youth are encouraged to lead the younger ones. Those who participate in SPY learn about leading work projects and teaching others how to use tools and accomplishing goals.