In order to respond to a windfall of questions we’re getting about Youth Ministries programming this fall, we thought we’d do a blog series over the next four weeks, each one highlighting a different aspect of FUMCFW Youth Ministries programming for the fall semester!
First off: Confirmation!
Confirmation is a beloved tradition in our community where 6th-grade youth go through a four-month process of learning more about our faith tradition and community, and experiencing the Christian life together as modeled in our Healthy Plate Discipleship framework.
Youth (or “confirmands”) get a chance to worship, learn, give, serve, pray, and play together, getting a true taste of not just Christian teaching, but Christian life. And then, in a culminating service, they get to choose, if they are ready, to claim that life as their own through their vows of confirmation of membership.
This beautiful service makes them official members of the church and welcomes them into Youth Ministries and all that lies beyond it!
This year, our confirmands will be placed in cohorts of six to eight, with two adult leaders; together they will journey through this process as a small group. Some of these groups will be virtual and some will meet in-person in the Justin Youth Building on Sunday afternoons. As parents register their young people, they will be able to choose whether they would like their youth to have an in-person or virtual experience.
If you or someone close to you has a child about to begin 6th grade who wants to be part of this program, we would love to have them register as soon as possible to ensure that we have the correct amount of leaders, cohorts, and spaces for everyone who wants to be involved! Any 6th grader is welcome to go through the confirmation program regardless of their family’s membership status at FUMCFW.
We know parents have a lot of hard choices to make this fall about school, extra-curriculars, social events, and know from the outset that we understand that those choices are difficult and that we are committed to giving a safe and excellent experience to young people who choose both the in-person and virtual options.
Know this: There is no wrong choice.
For those choosing a virtual option, also know that we are going through each of our lessons and re-working them to be as, if not more, effective in a virtual medium. We’re also coming up with creative extras, like journals they can keep and decorate and welcome kits to drop off at homes to ensure the experience is fun and meaningful for all of our youth.
For those choosing the in-person option, know that we have spoken with local public health experts about our specific space and needs. We have used their input in selecting rooms, measuring chair spacing, scheduling times, and writing procedures to ensure that the experience feels organic while still being as low-risk as possible for our youth and adults.
Confirmands and confirmation parents are all welcome to join us on Zoom at 12:00 pm on September 13 for an orientation to the program and parent meeting where we’ll talk through what confirmation families can expect from us — and what we expect from confirmation families — as well as timelines, forms, details, and a time for Q&A with both myself and our Middle School Program Coordinator, Gabby Wilkinson.
So register your child for confirmation, join us for our confirmation parent meeting on September 13, and feel free to reach out to us with any questions. We can’t wait to go on this incredible journey with your young people!
Director of Youth Ministries