Why is it that so many who lead churches believe that the youth group should be a hot bed of evangelistic activity and service even when the rest of the body reflects very little enthusiasm for reaching the lost? I’ve dealt with those who thought that youth ministry needed to spread a “wide net” (their term, not mine). The program needed to provide a place where teenagers could feel comfortable bringing their friends. And if the teenagers weren’t bringing their friends it must be a problem with the program right? Isn’t it at least a strong possibility that if teenagers aren’t bringing their friends to church they are just reflecting their parents’ enthusiasm for outreach?
Has anyone ever been at a meeting where people were standing up and yelling because the young married class wasn’t spreading a wide net? Has anyone ever been to a special meeting to discuss whether or not the senior adult ministry has too many cliques and isn’t welcoming to newcomers? Why have teenagers been singled out as the only age group that should be aggressively inviting their friends to church?
And just so you know, I’m not suggesting that youth ministry shouldn’t be evangelistic. I’m suggesting that in a church where the members in general are enthusiastic about evangelism the teenagers will also be enthusiastic about evangelism.