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All Middle and High schoolers are invited to join SJE Youth! We meet every Sunday morning for Faith Formation as well as every other Sunday afternoon for a variety of exciting events. Each meeting happens in the Youth Room (room 5 downstairs), though our events sometimes take us offsite. Our program is based upon Journey to Adulthood (J2A).
The Journey to Adulthood
J2A is a complete youth ministry program of spiritual formation for 6th-12th grades. It encourages relational ministry and uses Bible study, prayer, rites of passage, outreach ministries and both serious and playful activities to underscore the two guiding principles of the program: 1) Manhood and womanhood are free gifts from God; and 2) Adulthood must be earned. It includes in-depth exploration of Self, Spirituality, Sexuality and Society.
The first two years of the program are “Rite 13,” taken from the name of the liturgical rite of passage that celebrates young people around their 13th birthday (similar to a bar/bat-mitvah, and which assists young people as they begin to take the first steps of independence from their families into their own lives. During these two years, the community acknowledges the gift of gender, celebrates the amazing creative power and potential of these young people, and creates a safe haven in which to explore new ideas, new interests and new abilities.
The next segment (Grades 8-9 or 9-10) helps teens create and understand the importance of Christian community as they develop critical thinking and other skills they will need in adulthood. During the J2A phase, teens learn and practice six basic skills for adulthood: Active listening, Negotiation, Assertion, Research and information management, Partnership, Leadership. The end of J2A is marked with a spiritual pilgrimage that is often a life-changing experience for the group.
Young Adults in the Church
This mentor-based program helps older teens (11th and 12th graders) discern and carry out a ministry within their church or in the larger community. Vocation and development of a personal credo are also emphasized.
Below is a video example of one church’s J2A Pilgrimage experience.
SJE Youth would love to have you join us anytime! If you are new to St. John’s or would just like more information, please contact Children & Youth Coordinator Reyna Masko at 616-842-6260, ext. 28.