Totally Catholic Youth Ministers Lounge

Are you in youth ministry and you've had it with crazed parents? Rollin' your eyes at the pastoral council? Tired of administration work? Love youth? Love the Church? Appalled at parish politics? Looking for some good games? For a creative ways to teach a lesson for Religious Ed? Just need a place to veg out and say "phew! Someone outside of the parish to talk to!"? Grab y'r Starbucks, turn the computer away from the staff's eyes, grab a seat on a donated dusty couch and let it all go.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


mmmm. No.
I'm a huge U2 fan. I am a huge Eucharist fan. Huge.

But they are not nearly the same.

Love you, Bono, Edge, Larry, Adam. Love you. Even love The One campaign. Love you. Buuuuuut, No.

From a fan:

"It makes you, like, warm inside," says Bridgette Roberts, 15, who is a Roman Catholic and attended a recent U2 Eucharist at All Saints' Episcopal Church in Briarcliff Manor, N.Y. "Usually at church, you love Jesus and everything. But this way you can express how you feel."

Well, I guess that's what counts at Mass...

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Friday, January 26, 2007

Books, Links, Resources

I need to update the side over there. Before I start that project, do you have anything you think would be of help to other youth ministers that we can stick over there? I'm looking for books, websites, websites for games, theology, ym ideas, retreat places, workcamp, camps, etc. Anything you think might be helpful, shoot me an email, I'll review it and stick it up. I'll give you props, too, don't worry...

That's Props as in, uh, not skit material. As in, Hey, awright, this person gave us this...

Introduction To Christ by Steve Harvey

Preach it, Brother! Amen!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Hope In Trials

That is the title of the talk I've chosen for the Youth Ministers' Retreat this coming weekend.

What trials have you experienced? What trials are you experiencing currently?

Where have you seen hope in your ministry? How have you experienced hope in a trial?

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Prayer For Paul

My brother has gone to Ghana to do a medical missionary trip. He is an ophthomologist (an eye doctor) and took up an opportunity to go and give eye care to the villages of Tema and Accra:

I'm so proud of him, but a little nervous as well, as it is a third-world country. His main concern was picking up a parasite or some other diseases. He was even concerned about going to Mass there, which I would be too, frankly. But pray for their protection, success and that the Lord woud work in the hearts of all of the team to be ministers of Jesus even as they are performing medical procedures.

Paul at breakfast with host. And Dr. Paul doin' his thing

Paul in front of the Tema Christian Eye Center
Ghana, Africa

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Confirmation Retreat Ice-Breakers

Hey, what are some good Confirmation Retreat Ice Breakers? Some good folks in Eaton Rapids MI are looking. Ok, that would be my sister. Give it up for the sistaH!!!!


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Insane Talk Titles

John is breathing down my neck, waiting for a talk title. If he could reach in my brain and pull is out, I'm sure he'd prefer. I just can't seem to find what I'm aiming for.

In my punchiness over this, I have come up with these:
Being Outsourced By God
Graced By God
Graced By God The Gardener
Halt You Hoser: Being Graced By God The Gardener
IHNI (I Have No Idea)
INRI (I’m Not Really Interested),
WIMI? (Who Is Most Important?)
I’m Not Sure What I’m Doing
Help! I’m A Youth Minister!!!
Who Said Life Would Be Easy?
The Internal Life of a Minister
The Real Life of a Minister
The Insane Life of a Minister
Why Am I doing This?
Graced and Grouchy
Graced and Grumpy: The Insane Life of a Youth Minister
This is for the birds
It’s My Ministry.
Life-sucking Programs
Life Giving Resources
What does Christ have to do with Ministry?
What in the world are you taking about?
I’m fine, you’re fine
I’m insane
You’re insane
Burnout and You

I have spent the better part of my working day trying to figure it out. That's why these are so bad!! Calgon take me away!!

It's a PROCESS not a PROGRAM!!!


Youth Ministry is NOT a Sunday Night Event from 7-9pm or LifeTeen Mass at 6, pizza at 7, Lifenight at 7:30, done by 10. It's not even going to their games. It's not just hangin' out after their school hours. It's not planning a fun Friday night social.

I was chatting with some friends, one of whom is going into Youth Ministry. And God love her, she really knows how to relate to the young people and is taking courses in Catechetics. But because youth ministry is so narrow, still, in the United States, people keep talking about Sunday Night Youth Group.

When I was a teen, I did not fit into the group that went to Sunday Night Youth Group (SNYG). I didn't know the kids, I never felt comfortable or reached out too. I was visible in the Church, in that I cantored and was an EM, and I went through Confirmation. People knew I was there, but I never was invited to join and when I did show up on my own it was awful!

Ok, so my experience is several years old. But in some churches not much has changed.

This friend and I were talking about LifeTeen. Now, I love LifeTeen for what it is. I'm annoyed by it for what it isn't.

That is why I always bring up the 8 Components of Youth Ministry. This is THE BEST way that I have found to bring about a comprehensive formative process in which to engage teens in nearly any way just as unique as each kid. But it also goes hand in hand with the "Bosconian" (really, I should say Salesian, I guess) approach to youth ministry. It's about reaching out, it's about laying down your fears, it's about talking to kids that don't know you, it's about being intentional when looking at their lives and finding a place for them in your ministry plans.

I don't even care if a parish does LifeTeen. I will say that their Confirmation and classsroom material is THE BEST I have seen out there. It is user friendly for teachers and is a solid balanced mix of teen culture and Church teaching (most are either too teen friendly and have pablum for Church teaching or are mega-heavy on Church teaching and leave the kids in the dust). But I care little for what program they are "using". I want to know that youth ministers are thinking comprehensively and sacrificially. That they are going outside of their comfort zone to bring kids in. That they are making plans that will invite kids of all shapes, sizes and interests into the life of the Church.

Am I making ANY sense here???

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Friday, January 12, 2007

Decaf - Handmotions in Heaven

I just love it when these two work together.

This was at the Youth Ministers' Conference. Yes, the one that was in Las Vegas. Hello planners???

Anyway, this is hysterical.


Friday, January 05, 2007

Speaking of Which

I've been asked to speak at the Youth Ministers' Retreat. But I'm not sure what about?

Do you have any ideas?

Right now we have:
John and Lisa Beaulieu: Marriage and Ministry
Bob Rice: Praying with Scripture
Brian Kissinger: Your 1st Year 5 Non-Negotiables
Emily Stimpson: Girls with Eating Disorders
Sr. Marie Therese Iglasias: Developing Your Relationship With Christ
Me: ummmmmm....

Last year I did one on Burnout-what I've been through and how to avoid it. I used Deus Caritas Est quite a bit. I was quite familiar with the topic as well as the recovery involved.

I'm going to have to think and pray. What would you come to hear? What would feed your soul? What are you hearing out there?

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Thursday, January 04, 2007

Lame Duck

Would be yours truely.

What do you have on your mind? What is going on? Are you on break now that the kids have Christmas break? Are you taking time for yourself? Are you coming to the YOUTH MINISTERS' RETREAT????!!!!

Tell me. Inquiring minds want to know...what's planned for January? For Spring? For 2007?