Rooted Resources for Integrating Students Into the Life of Your Church

One of Rooted’s five pillars of youth ministry is Intergenerational Integration, the belief that one of the goals of youth ministry must be to help students find their place in the local church. We notice that many youth ministers are persuaded this should be a priority, and yet if we’re honest, most of us find that we’re not quite sure how to tackle this goal. Here are some practical resources from our blog and podcast to help you get started as you pray for God’s wisdom and grace in this area of ministry.

Meeting the Challenge of Intergenerational Integration by Rebecca Lankford

But how do we begin to integrate in the world we find ourselves in now – one where many church bodies are unable to gather in public—especially those with large elderly populations? Just because physical integration is not a current option does not mean that we should ignore the task of integration all together. Perhaps now more than ever, our students need to be incorporated into the life of the church not just physically but spiritually. In a time of physical isolation from the body of Christ, intergenerational integration will require a more creative approach as we seek to form lifelong church members in a post-pandemic world.

Youth Ministry and the Church: Open and Regular Communication by Melanie Lacy

Effective communication between the youth pastor, senior pastor and wider ministry team is essential in order to ensure the successful inclusion of young people into the congregation. The youth pastor is only one cog in this ministry wheel and – lets be honest – often a cog that feels isolated and even ignored! Nevertheless, a mature and godly youth pastor will seek to communicate well and wisely with the senior pastor and wider ministry team for the good of the whole church family.

Ask Rooted: How Do You Incorporate Teenagers Into Corporate Worship?

We believe strongly that students are part of the Church—but sometimes including them in the life of our local churches is easier said than done. Here are some ideas from Rooted writers about how to get students involved in your churchs worship. 

The Value of Intergenerational Relationships In the Church by Katie Polski

Im grateful for the example of youth ministers who deliberately seek to expose youth to the adults in their congregations. And equally important, the adults need to be on the lookout for these youth who are as much a part of the congregation as they are. Young people need to be prayed for, called by name, and shown that their interests matter.

Youth Ministers, Yes— You Should Consider an MDiv (And Here’s Why.) by Chelsea Kingston Erickson

As the church sees you taking Scripture and church life seriously, they will unconsciously begin to take the youth group more seriously, too. And as students observe you taking a lead role not only in the youth ministry but also the whole church, they are bound to sense that they have a part to play as well.

Rooted Podcast: Integrated! Getting Students into the Life of the Church by Dave Wright (2015 Conference Workshop)

Dave Wright, Coordinator for Youth Ministries in the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina, spoke at the 2015 Rooted Conference about integrating students into their respective churches. Daves story involved once placing a higher priority on student-to-student relationships, but after a trip to England realized the imperative value for students to have and build relationships outside of each other, and outside the youth leadership. Listen to this podcast to hear Dave discuss integrating youth into the lives of the average congregation-member.

Rooted Podcast: Tony Souder on Intergenerational Ministry

In this episode of the Rooted Podcast, we speak to the delightful Tony Souder about his passion for helping youth ministers stay the course for the long haul, as well as the incomparable value of intergenerational ministry. Tony has been in youth ministry for twenty-four years. He is the Executive Director of the Chattanooga Youth Network and the Founder of the Pray for Me Campaign. For further reading on the Rooted blog about the Pray for Me Campaign, check out this article by Liz Edrington.

Chelsea is Editor of Youth Ministry Content and the Director of Publishing for Rooted. She previously served as a youth pastor in New England churches for 13 years. She and her husband, Steve, live north of Boston and are parents to Wells and Emmett. Chelsea holds an M.Div from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where she is currently pursuing a Master of Theology (Th.M.) in Old Testament Studies. She is passionate about teaching teenagers biblical theology and helping them learn to study Scripture for themselves.

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