Without doubt, the primary responsibility of the molding of a young person’s character is on the home. I’m hoping that my past articles have made clear the need for us to be actively involved in the development of our young ones by being the type of person you want them to become, and to work hard in developing meaningful relationships with your children.
However, having great partners to help you on this parenting journey is a huge plus. One such partner is the school you send your child to. My boss always says that the school forms an important partnership with the home, and I take my role as a partner to the parents who trust their children to our care quite seriously. Indeed, at The Abba’s Orchard, the Montessori system that it faithfully follows makes us more than just teachers. We are often mentors.
If you belong to a churchgoing family like I do, then you have another great partner at your disposal…that is, if your church is a good one; and by that I mean that it has programs and activities that empower families and develop the youth.
The church that I go to here in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines is called Christ’s Commission Fellowship (or CCF for short); and it is one such church. It has strong advocacies for marriage and parenting, and it has great youth programs. I blogged about some of the teens that go there in my personal blog site that I no longer update (see Teens Who Wait and M&M).
But later this week, something special will happen. There will be an overhaul in the youth: new name, new vision, and likely a new level of awesome. The new names? JZone for the college students (formerly TOUCH-College), JZone High (formerly T.E.E.N.S.) for the high schoolers.
I will not explain what JZone means here. That’s for your teen, should he or she attend, to find out. And trust me, as a former youth leader some years ago, ministries like this are fantastic partners that you can have in helping you raise happy and healthy teenagers. When I led the youth, many of them came up to me after the messages and said stuff like “Man, I wish so-and-so was here to learn that,” or “this is really changing me.” They also get to know teens with the right mindset, but who also struggle with the things all teens struggle with.
The launching of JZone will be this Friday, July 1, 6 PM, in an event called JZONE CONNECTION. It’s open to all high school and college age youngsters. Best of all, it’s totally free!
The great people who run it tell me that it would be the start of great, great things to come. They are super excited, and as a parent of a soon to be teen, I am excited too. Looks like the youth of CCF will be as dynamic and as vibrant as ever.
If you live in Cagayan de Oro, and you are a teen or you are a parent of a teen, then consider this an invitation to this Friday’s JZONE CONNECTION. I will certainly be there (see address in the video below; it's right across from the Robinson's Mall indoor car park), so I hope I'll see you and your teen, too.
Just like the sentiments of the JZone leaders, this could be the start of great things to come.