As vital and active members of Central Presbyterian Church, our youth in grades six through twelve offer countless gifts in the life of our community. Serving as Elders and Deacons, they help govern the church and provide care to members in need. Leading worship as ushers, musicians, and liturgists, the youth help shape our dynamic, communal worship on Sunday mornings. As members in committees and volunteers in congregational outreach efforts, they offer their perspectives, time, and talents to our work together within these walls and outside our doors.
Recognizing that this stage of development is especially formative in one’s faith, Central also seeks to provide several spaces for youth to learn, grow, connect, and ask questions. On Sunday mornings throughout the year, the youth can engage in a variety of Sunday school offerings, with age appropriate curricula for both middle and high school youth. A year-long confirmation class, typically for youth in eighth and ninth grades, occurs at least once every two years to prepare youth to join the church formally.
Youth in Worship
The youth also lead Sunday morning worship specifically through Central’s music and arts programs. A youth bell choir rehearses Sunday mornings, and the Jerusalem Choir, a vocal group, rehearses on Sunday evenings. Please contact Dave VanderMeer for the bell choir or Rachel Stewart for the vocal choir.
Youth Fellowship – Sunday evening at 6 p.m. in Youth Suite
During these Sunday evening Youth Fellowship gatherings, the youth are invited to Central’s youth suite to join in fellowship, community service, learning, and faith formation during a time that is their own. In this space, the youth form lasting bonds with each other and staff and adult volunteers, laying a firm foundation for life in Christian community. Each year, the youth serve dinner in the Central Night Shelter, prepare for their Youth Sunday worship service, play games, have deep conversations, and much, much more.
Each winter, the youth engage in a mission trip to a nearby destination over a weekend, and in the summer, youth take a longer mission trip to a place in this country or abroad. Recent destinations have included: Denver for an urban ministry experience; Washington, DC, for the presidential inauguration; Costa Rica for international immersion and outreach; Iona, Scotland, to experience the ecumenical community there; and others.
January 12, 2018 | The youth traveled to Birmingham, AL to honor the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination. The weekend was filled with service activities, singing in the First Presbyterian Sunday worship service, touring various places in Birmingham, and learning about the civil rights movement as well as current social justice issues.
January 20, 2017 | During the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Holiday, the youth traveled to Americus, GA to visit Koinonia Farm, a Christian farming intentional community founded in 1942 and the birthplace of Habitat for Humanity.
Additionally during this trip, they visited El Refugio, a ministry of hospitality and visitation serving immigrants detained at Stewart Detention Center, their families, and friends located in Lumpkin, GA.
“This past weekend was a doorway that led me out of my own bubble and into the open world. I was able to walk through history on the historic grounds of Koinonia. I was able to participate in games and dining and outings with friends of different backgrounds, philosophies, and skin tone. Finally, I was humbled to witness the pain and confusion that another human being was experiencing at Stewart Detention Center. That singular experience, even though taking place behind glass, broke down so many walls. I met with a Muslim immigrant who came to the US to provide for his family and seek safety from threats in his home country. Not only hearing his story but seeing the pain aching in his eyes, helped me see his true form, a human being. He is a person trying his best in life, just like you and me. With that perspective cemented, I am able to be more aware of the situations that aid and infect our world. I am forever grateful to have that opportunity.” – Will Wilson
“I think the most meaningful part was going to the P.O.W. camp. I had never realized how devastating war was and still is. The rows and rows of tombstones. That seemed as if they when on forever, really show a drastic war is. I think that I walked away with a different outlook about wars.” – Sam Byers
August 2016 | This summer the Central youth went on their Youth Mission Trip to General Assembly to Portland Oregon (June 18- 25, 2016).
If you missed the recap of the youth mission trip presented to Central’s General assembly, watch the video here.
Photos from our Youth End of Year Celebration, Sunday, May 15, 2016.
Forms and Sign-Ups
Youth Permission, Medical, & Photo Release Form – Please make sure the church has a release form for each of your youth.