No one knows how to do ministry in a pandemic. This is all so difficult. My Presbyterian Youth Workers Association (PYWA) colleagues and I worked with the Office of Faith Formation to help provide some support to youth workers through some Quicksheets. The Quicksheet, “Stay Home, Stay Connected” gives youth workers some ideas about how to use our gifts of support and connection virtually as we do ministry in the midst of a pandemic. We are all doing our best and trying new things.
My favorite thing to do with my youth in this time is just to be present and listen to them. Each week, during our Virtual Youth Group or Bible Study online, I remind them that we are experiencing collective grief. And I check-in with each youth, giving each a chance to speak. Just the simple act of checking in, the reminder of the presence of God in the midst of chaos, talking about their “highs and lows” and reminding them to be gentle with themselves is the role of the church.
Sarah E. Leer, Director of Youth and Their Families, First Presbyterian Church of Dallas (Dallas, TX)