GenOn's bimonthly newsletter featuring insights, ideas, events, resources and announcements.
January/February 2016
Beyond cell phones: Connecting with youth
Rob Monroe, First Presbyterian Church, Kirkwood, Missouri
We have a saying on our mission trips and retreat weekends in our high school fellowship: "Leave your Kirkwood problems in Kirkwood."
This is not to say that what is happening with friends and family back home do not matter, because those things are what our youth are leaving when we leave and returning to when we return. What is meant by our request is that we are away and together for a reason.
Admittedly, when we first started trying to get youth to leave their cell phones behind, there were some growing pains and some whining. We explained our goal for our time together was just that - we need to be together and not hung up on the drama that flies around that they cannot control from miles away.
I am a big fan of social media and all that it does to promote community with people with established relationships. That said, it's very easy to get sucked into conflicts that do not involve you. A random comment in a group that you hardly care about one day can light a fire in your belly and suck your attention for an hour without even trying.
Our youth face the same challenge. Count yourself lucky if you've never led a youth activity and had a great thing going - only to have a student burst into tears over something that has nothing to do with anyone in your world. Things that matter to our students matter to us as partners in their faith journey. But it can be frustrating when students are more focused on social or school drama when we're finally hitting a stride in a lesson or game at church. I have shown my annoyance - and not subtly sometimes.
It's hard to remember when things like this happen, but our youth are already committed to our ministries. Often it only takes one visit for us to become invested in them. If they have shown up more than twice, they are invested in you and what you're doing. Remember that - even when they're distracted by their phones or social media dramas.
We are privileged to spend time with young people today. We have an opportunity to reach them where they are - both spiritually and emotionally speaking. We get to reach and teach them about relationships that matter. What an awesome responsibility and humbling honor.
What is your "youth connection success story?" 
Please share it with us via the LOGOS Ideas group on Facebook or GenOn's website.
GenOn Youth Summits = Significant Christian community
Liz Perraud, Executive Director, GenOn Ministries
What is the best way to sustain the mountaintop experiences of youth retreats, conferences, camps and summits?
Relationships. More specifically, intentional Christian relationships.
Relationships not only facilitate Christian mountaintop experiences but help us remember those experiences for months (or years!) to come and bring us back to repeat the experiences again and again.
One of GenOn's Realities of Christian Nurture is that "significant experiences of Christian community happen in camp/retreat settings." It's no surprise then that GenOn summer Youth Summits are significant experiences of Christian community and that youth and their adult leaders return year after year after year.
I've attended both our West (Colorado) and East (West Virginia) summits and have seen and experienced the relational context. Each summit looks like "one big youth group" because of the strong cross-church and cross-denominational friendships. And the friendships continue long after the week is over through social media, prayer requests, visits to other churches and even shared mission work. And they pick right back up again the next summer.
The LOGOS approach to the summit week provides time to eat together, study together, serve together, worship together and play together. Lasting relationships with one another (peers and cross-generational) and with God are formed during the week.
Download the West or East summit packet and consider bringing a group of high school youth to either Colorado or West Virginia this July. Questions? Contact Summit Operations Coordinator Kelly Burnett.
Registration is now open. I hope to see you there!
In Christ,
Liz Perraud
Executive Director
GenOn Ministries
cell: 443-255-8492
Toll-free: 877-937-2572

Parents Corner: Keeping youth active in church
Shirley Carlson, La Crescenta Presbyterian Church, California
GenOn's intergenerational ministry focus is right on target. Studies by Sticky Faith and Fuller Youth Institute show that youth who have meaningful relationships with at least five church adults, other than their own parents, are more likely to remain active in church as adults.

LOGOS is an excellent way to connect children and youth with adults. Check out these resources as well for additional ideas for how to include youth:

In this issue
Meet GenOn's
new board members!
         Aqueelah       Thomas
          Ligonde         Guthrie
               Bio                Bio 


Plan ahead for
July 10-15
Summit West
Estes Park, Colorado

July 17-23
Wheeling, West Virginia 


    One Great Idea    
One Great Idea

from the LOGOS Family Time Pinterest Board

Coming soon!
LOGOS Toolkit Collection
Everything from the four parts to administrative tools
to leadership guidelines
Together we can do
so much more!

Need games, graces or thanks? Check out our free  LOGOS Ideas Collection


We want your ideas, too. Contact for more information. 

Quick Links
GenOn Ministries | PO Box 4, Springdale, PA 15144 | 877-937-2572