January 25, 2015

Youth & Family Ministries Pastor’s Report

We are experiencing exciting growth in our youth and family ministries. Yes, we are seeing growing numbers of young families, children and youth call the Los Altos UMC their church “home.” But, we are also seeing roots of Christian discipleship grow deeper in us all as we discern the Holy Spirit’s call upon our ministries here. I am deeply grateful for the church’s willingness to try new things; to open themselves to new people and new ways. While it is the hope of our risen Christ that keeps me going each day, it is your heart for God; your openness to follow Jesus; your commitment to discerning where the Holy Spirit is guiding the church that inspires me continuously. I am thankful for your trust in my efforts and guidance; I am excited to see where we are heading together. Below are some highlights of our missional efforts:

Sharing the Good News:

  • Developing and strengthening our welcoming efforts to our Sunday worship experience, our all ages events, as well as Everyone’s Inn on Wednesdays
  • Strengthening our Inn ministry to welcome folks at all stages of a spiritual journey
  • Produced/oversaw the successful development and launch of Groundlings Summer Day Camp

Growing in the Image of Christ:

  • Leading confirmation class of 11 youth/families and 11 Faith Friends
  • Leading the Parents’ Support Team to support the fundraising and administrative aspects of youth ministry; leading Youth Core Team which develops student disciples and church leaders
  • Expanding and strengthening Adults Leaders with Youth Team, as well as provided supervision and support for Family Ministries Associate and Sunday School Teacher’s Team
  • Bringing a team to Faith Forward Conference and Think Orange events for student ministry trainings
  • Leading a group of middle + high school youth to Cal-Pac conference weekend events: Youth Alive & Spirit Quest
  • Sponsored and hosted 4 Youth Parenting Workshops on LAUMC Campus, connecting community leaders and resources to address topics pertinent to healthy parenting for adolescents

Worshipping Joyfully:

  • Youth Sunday
  • Leading congregation to welcome all ages more fully in worship

Manifesting God’s love:

  • Making care packages for our college students
  • Designed youth + service team spring weekend efforts to serve our church members in their homes
  • Creating safe places of relational ministry with young adults, youth & families
  • Souper Bowl of Caring - raising $800 to fight hunger, providing education about hunger issues with student ministries
  • Served at The Neighborhood’s Los Posadas event and Broken Loaf Food Pantry
  • Assisting the launch of the “Garden of Grace,” providing fresh food for the BLFP
  • Imagine No Malaria - over $2,000 raised by our youth. Won the Conference Award for the most funds raised!
  • Supporting a team for Sierra Service Project to Tsaile, Arizona

Respectfully submitted,
Rev. Melinda Teter Dodge