October Newsletter

October Newsletter

Talking with Teens about Sex, Tech, and Faith

News from the Center


Emotional Wellness Month
This is Emotional Wellness Month. Are you having a hard time maintaining your emotional well-being? Or are you tending to youth who are in need of extra care? We’ve got resources at Pastoral Care & Mental Health.


Jill Olds

From the YMI Director: A Reflection on Emotional Wellness Month
Dear youth ministry friends,

The other day, I was chatting with a colleague about the busy-ness of the fall. September and October always seem to be such a full time for those of us with young people in our lives.

See YMI Director Jill Old’s message below on Emotional Wellness Month.


NEW Yale Bible Study – Joshua and Judges
From the conquest of Canaan to the stories of Samson, the books of Joshua and Judges describe Israel in its formative years as a community: no longer wandering in the desert, and not yet a kingdom proper. These books treat the questions of how Israel is to live alongside other peoples and other nations, how to wage holy war, how to self-govern. And they are shaped by the overarching issue of the community’s obedience to the divine will – and what befalls individuals and Israel as a whole when obedience is lacking.

This new Yale Bible Study explores all these issues, and also asks probing questions about the historical realities behind these stories and about the moral issues raised throughout. Begin our Joshua and Judges Bible study here.


Church Budgets in the Xennial World: Pursuing Sustainability in 2023Church Budgets in the Xennial World: Pursuing Sustainability in 2023 with Jim Elrod
Did you miss this seminar on budgeting for today – and beyond? You can now watch this three-part series that reviewed church budgeting in this changing ministry landscape and provides recommendations on changes you may want to implement in your budget processes for 2023 and beyond.

All three sessions include mission and money (session 1), traditional why and how of church budgets (session 2), and budgeting for 2023 (session 3).


2022 Upcoming Events and Offerings


Mark Your Calendar!
Don’t miss out on our upcoming events this fall. If you missed out on an earlier event, you can view them on our YMI webpage, YBS webpage, and our Center for Continuing Education webpage.


 

Creating Communities of Inclusion and Belonging for Youth with Disabilities
Last Chance to Register -Talking with Teens about Sex, Tech, and Faith with Dr. Kate Ott
October 5th; 12 – 1:30 pm ET
This event will provide a nuanced approach that prioritizes honesty and discernment over fear and judgment. Also, you will receive curricular practices that draw on core values of the Christian tradition to help teens develop a just and flourishing sexuality in the digital age.
Creating Communities of Inclusion and Belonging for Youth with Disabilities with Dr. Erik Carter, Ph.D.
November 2nd; 12 – 1:30 pm ET

Dr. Carter will share a powerful framework for reflecting upon and fostering belonging within youth and other congregational ministries. Together, we will explore the implications of this work on the ways we support youth with disabilities and on the ways we spur our own churches to be more inclusive and welcoming.
Register at: Talking with Teens about Sex, Tech, and Faith Register at: Creating Communities of Inclusion and Belonging for Youth with Disabilities

Anchor


AnchorFrom the YMI Director: A Reflection on Emotional Wellness Month
Dear youth ministry friends,

The other day, I was chatting with a colleague about the busy-ness of the fall. September and October always seem to be such a full time for those of us with young people in our lives:

  • back-to-school programs
  • Sunday school or youth group kick-offs
  • outdoor gatherings while the weather stays warm
  • parent-teacher conferences (double these if your kiddo is having a tough start to the year)
  • fall activities (raking, apple-picking, Halloween events)
  • unusual school schedules, peppered with holidays and shortened days

I was on a roll now, so I went on. With both of my kids’ birthdays in October, I shared that my calendar also includes parties, sleepovers, family visits, doctor office physicals, and classroom celebrations. Icing on the cake: My spouse and I have my high school reunion and a wedding in our calendar this month, too.

“And, I’m a student again this fall!” I shared with my colleague. “It’s just so busy.”

Then, my friend asked me the clarifying question: “Jill, when are you getting time to rest, and to reflect?”

I normally would have brushed off the “rest” portion of her question… and not because I believe in the “I’ll rest when I’m dead” mentality. I do take Sabbath time every week, and I try very hard not to schedule anything on that day. But the “reflect” piece of my friend’s excellent query gave me pause.

When, and how, do we reflect upon what we’re seeing and experiencing as youth leaders? 

And: when and how do we reflect upon what we’re seeing and experiencing as people of God?

If you missed our September gathering, featuring Dr. Szu-Hui Lee, here’s a two-minute clip.

A psychologist from Phillips Exeter Academy with ties to Harvard Medical School, Dr. Lee speaks about how we are tending to youth in this season… and how we are tending to ourselves. Her image here of a rubber band is compelling. We don’t bounce back to who we once were before stress and challenge. We are changed, formed, and re-formed. Hopefully, by God’s grace, for the better… some rubber bands snap from too much pressure!

I’m taking more time to reflect these days. Beloved of God, in this Emotional Wellness Month, I hope the same for you. I hope you find time to reflect upon all that you’re doing, and how you are doing. Not only will it be an emotional balm for our soul, but it will model something life-giving for our young people. Blessings, friends, on your ministries, and on you!

On the journey with you,

Rev. Jill Olds


If you’d like to help support our mission, you can make a donation here. There is joy to be found in practicing generosity. Your gift will enable us to continue to provide the necessary tools and resources that support life changing ministries.


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