Dear Middle School and High School Family,
Welcome to Western Hills Church of Christ. We are always excited to begin a new season of ministry. We have been praying, planning and preparing for another incredible year. If there is any one group of people that cares a great deal of the individual students in the youth ministry, it's the parents. As the parent of your teenager, we realize that no one has more influence on their child's life, and yet we understand the difficulties in raising teenagers in today's world. We want to partner with you in this journey to raise up Christian leaders that would be difference makers for Jesus Christ and learn to live their lives with purpose and meaning.
Ecclesiastes 4:12 tells us that "Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." In the Western Hills Church youth ministry we want to build that same truss bridge, made up of units with unique strengths. Your family, the Western Hills youth ministry and God are the key to the strength of the ministry. In order for this partnership to work, we need parents that will encourage their students to be active and consistent in the life of the church. Also, we want you to know that we are always available should you need to discuss ministry issues concerning your child.
We are constantly learning new ways to be the most effective ministry possible so that we can do our part in this partnership. We have the most outstanding adult and parent volunteer youth workers that give their time generously to the needs of your children. Please encourage them as they serve to help your children to grow in their journey with Jesus Christ.
For more information, contact Youth Minister Kyle Parker in the church office.
Philosophy of Youth Ministry
At Western Hills our goal is to be a place where all students are cared for and discipled by an adult who is trained and cared for by the ministry. We believe in this philosophy for several reasons. They are listed below.
- Middle school and high school students today need their parents to partner with the youth ministry. If there is any one group of people that cares a great deal for the individ-ual students in the youth ministry-it's the parents. At the very least parents should be working in tandem with their student youth ministry. The youth minis-try is a kind of boat-providing a place to stand, companionship with others of like mind and imagination, and a rudder to guide in a society that has otherwise lost direction. Families can sail with hope and support back into the troubled wa-ters of their own family.
- Middle school and high school students today need significant adult investment in their lives in addition to their parents. The bottom-line responsibility for the spiritual growth of children lies with parents. A looming temptation for today's student is rebelling against authority, often that authority being mom and dad. This attitude toward authority will ultimately impact their intimacy with God and the chances of them becoming a disciple of Christ. Influential adults in the youth ministry can visit and emphasize in non-threatening ways the importance of parents and why God has placed them in their lives. This process is an under girding truss that draws parents and students together.
- We believe that our parents are the most effective way for reaching unchurched families. The fastest way for a youth ministry to have credibility in an unchurched home is by being introduced by a committed and supportive parent. When parents talk and swap "war" stories with each other and how they conquered or were conquered by their child is a great opportunity for evangelism. Through this moment new families can be connected with the ministry and cared for by a friend.
- We believe that when our students are being discipled effectively, they will in turn understand the urgency of reaching their friends for Jesus. This is one rea-son why we choose to be called a student ministry rather than a youth group. We want the students in our ministry to understand the two most basic principles in life: love God and love others. We understand that as adults we can challenge and disciple students well. But, we believe that students are the most effective at reach-ing their peers and bringing them into a community of faith to be challenged.