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A Guide to Planning Worship with Teens

A range of research shows that when teens are given the opportunity to be involved in worship planning and leadership, several good things happen: their spiritual lives and faith commitments deepen, and their leadership abilities blossom. Good mentorship is crucial. A good leader or mentor can create a safe place for teens to experience God in vulnerability, explore why and how we worship, and discuss the deeper meaning of worship elements. To help youth leaders and mentors identify good resources that teach young adults about worship, and to provide leaders with ideas and learning exercises, the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, an online resource to support worship renewal, invited Sharon Veltema, a teacher for spiritual growth at Unity Christian High School, to develop a resource page for planning worship with teens. The helpful resources include a set of curated articles and books, a website on youth research, and a group of related Institute pages to help leaders start, develop, and lead effective youth worship and leadership programs. For more on youth, youth programming, and youth worship, see our article "Best Resources on Youth and Youth Programming for Congregations." For more on how teens feel about spirituality, religion, and religious traditions, read our feature article, "Teenage Religiosity: Widely Practiced, Poorly Understood."

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