When I was in seminary, I served an inner-city church. Once a week, during the summer, we hosted a neighborhood block party. The idea was simple: knock on doors, invite people to the party, eat lots of tasty food, have some activities for the kids, a brief worship service, and celebrate what it means to live in community. Each week we had a blast! It was more successful that I ever imagined.
So, how does this translate to youth ministry?
This summer, encourage your youth to live out the commandment "love thy neighbor." Most of us, don't know our neighbors. Most of us are unfamiliar with who lives in the buildings, apartments, and homes surrounding our churches. But what if we really reached out to others?
You could do this two different ways:
- Encourage your youth (along with their family members and done in a safe and healthy way) to get to know four new neighbors. At the end of summer, have your youth invite the new neighbors to a "Building Block" celebration at church.
- During summer, host a neighborhood party at your church once a month or even once a week.
Who knows what the results might bring?