The Rite of Way in Faith: Rites of Passage and Youth Ministry

Gina Yeager-BuckleyRituals and Transitions

Adolescence, at least US/North American adolescence, can be seen as a seven-year span of age (12–18 years) or grades (6th–12th grades). Over these seven years, numerous adolescent status changes occur: puberty, educational structure, licensing, sexual attraction, dating, working, future forecasting (post high school plans, such as college, vo-tech, travel), and voting.

As youth ministry has taken the great step to shrink the distance between the young person and their faith formation (meaning faith isn’t just about a Sunday schedule), there is significant meaning and impact in connecting youth ministry to to the rites of adolescence or the Rites of Passage.

The Reasons Why

Forrest PalmerTransitions—All Things Made New

I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert” (Isaiah 43:19 NRSV). Change. We see it everywhere—in culture, in our denominations, in our churches. And we’re seeing it in APCE too. We’re in a time of transition, a time of looking toward the future with a renewed vision. We are so grateful for those … Read More

Balancing on a One-Legged Stool

Rodger NishiokaTransitions—All Things Made New

Have you ever tried to sit comfortably on a stool with only one leg? It is pretty much impossible. To be dependable and to support our weight, a stool needs at least three legs. In the same way, throughout much of our North American church history, we have depended on and even presumed three “legs” to do Christian education. In the early years, Christian education took place in homes, the first leg. Prayers were taught … Read More

The Lord Will Lead

Tori SmitTransitions—All Things Made New

By the rivers of Babylon— there we sat down and there we wept when we remembered Zion. On the willows there we hung up our harps. For there our captors asked us for songs, and our tormentors asked for mirth, saying, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!” How could we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land? Psalm 137:1-4 (NRSV) One of the things I often do with congregations is to invite them to … Read More

APCE is Reforming

Anne WilsonTransitions—All Things Made New

My husband and I have lived in Houston, Texas, for more than 40 years, and we have lived in the same house for 25 years. Once our two kids moved out, we were ready for some changes. After four years of thinking about what to do with our house, we decided to build a new structure on the existing foundation–because we love our location and neighborhood. We spent nine months working with architects and contractors … Read More

Making space for change

Theresa ChoTransitions—All Things Made New

We can all agree that change is hard. We can also agree that change is inevitable. Everyday the world around us is changing. Our reaction to change may vary from holding fast to tradition and what is familiar to embracing what may come with open arms and flowing wherever the wind may blow. The church I serve, St. John’s, has gone through many changes in the years I’ve been there, but these changes did not … Read More