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ROOTS response to Covid-19 pandemic

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Related Bible reading(s): John 14.1-14
Spiritual styles abbreviations and further information
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NEW! Version for groups meeting online             

Read Tips for running a youth group online to find out more about how to take your youth group online.

If doing the activities on this page virtually, the young people will need:
pen, paper

Share the Bible passage together followed by the ‘Questions to discuss’ below. Then use the activities with highlighted text. You may find that you can adapt some of the other activities too.

Warm up            5 mins WE

As the young people arrive, ask them to help you set up the space ready to start your session. As you work together, talk about what it means to prepare the space. What are the things that are important? What do you need and what could you do without? How many people do you have space for?

Speak it            5 mins WE

Print out copies of John 14.1-14 (see www.biblegateway.com) and distribute to each young person. Ask for volunteers to act the parts of Jesus, Thomas and Philip, and read/act the words as you narrate the rest of the text. Give the group a few moments to read it through for themselves, before reading the passage together.

Questions to discuss

  • What stands out to you the most about what Jesus says here?

  • If you were one of the disciples, what would you like to ask Jesus?

  • What does it mean for Jesus to remain with us?

Jesus on the football pitch            10 mins WE

Give the young people a piece of paper and pens and ask them to create a simple chart showing where they spend their time. Talk about where they find it easy to feel Jesus with them, and where they would like to be more aware of Jesus’ presence. Is there anything they could change in their week to be more aware of Jesus’ presence? Can they go anywhere where Jesus isn’t with them?

If doing this virtually, remind the young people to bring a pen and paper to the ‘session’.

My story            10 mins WE

Before the session, invite a leader, young person, or other member of your church to come and share some of their own story, about a specific time when they have been very aware of God’s presence in their lives, or how they feel close to him in their daily lives. Invite the young people to ask their own questions.

If doing this virtually, you could invite a member of your church to join you for this part of the ‘session’.

Preview songs on YouTube, buy online and download.

Steady, Blanca on Shattered
I will, Citizen way on 2.0
Confident, Steffany Gretzinger on Blackout

Seeing both sides            10 mins WES

Give out strips of paper and ask the young people to write the words of John 14.7 along it. Invite them to twist the strip and glue the ends together to make a Mobius strip (detailed instructions). Talk about what Jesus meant when he said that we can see the Father by seeing him, and how this symbol can help to represent this.

If doing this virtually, remind the young people to bring a pen and paper to the ‘session’.

Mirror, mirror            10 mins ES

Arrange the young people in pairs and ask them to face one another. Designate one player as the leader; their partner should follow their moves, trying to copy as closely as possible, as in a mirror. Discuss together how this passage talks about Jesus following in the way of the Father and us following in Jesus’ steps, mirroring what we see him do.

  • What do you use to help you find the way?
  • How does it feel that Jesus has prepared a way and a place for each of us?
  • When are the most difficult times to recognise Jesus as the way?

Follow you            5 mins ES

Before you pray together, ask the young people to create some actions for these phrases: ‘the way’, ‘follow’ and ‘with you’. Lead the group in the following prayer and encourage everyone to join in with the actions at the appropriate points:
Lord Jesus,
thank you that you are the way.
Help us to follow you in all we do,
remembering that we always go with you,
wherever we may be.
Amen.

Go with me            10 mins ESA

Place a large map of the local area on the floor. Give each young person a few stickers or marker pens and ask them to mark out the places they will be going to this coming week, or places where they pray that Jesus might bring God’s love. As they do this, encourage the young people to pray quietly that they might follow Jesus and do his will.

Online labyrinth             

Do this individually on laptops/iPads/tablets, or as a whole group.

Explain that a labyrinth is not a maze, which has multiple paths and dead ends and is designed to confuse and trap. A labyrinth has one path that leads to the centre and back out again. There is one entrance and one exit and you can’t get lost. It symbolises the journey of life and can be a helpful prayer tool.

Access the virtual labyrinth online. If time is limited, do one or two pieces together and let people complete it at home.

ES

Begin each day by looking at a map (this could be on your phone) and asking Jesus to show you the way.

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