With another pandemic-affected year underway, there are many exciting plans and initiatives that are in store from the TCYFM office this year. Although Omicron is making calendars float in a constant state of uncertainty, exciting and innovative resources are still being developed for children and youth ministry across Te Hāhi.
Easter Camps, on a large scale, unfortunately fall victim to Omicron this year, meaning that physical gatherings of young people from across the Connexion over the Holy Week aren’t possible in the current climate. That said, we are looking to create resources and online events that can fill this void and give young people the chance to engage virtually across the church through Lent. This is a continuation of what was done last year where online verse of the week wallpapers were created in English, Samoan, Tongan and Fijian languages. For 2022, we’re excited to explore the timeless message of Lent in new and refreshing ways that engage with a variety of different mediums.
Building on the work of our Conference Music team from Conference 2021, this year looks to be a huge year for creativity and music. We will continue to increase our Mission Resource music library database and in addition, will provide opportunities for new young music to be created in the church which will reflect the context the church finds itself in today. This has been in the pipeline for a few years now.
Plans are underway for the establishment of a network for creatives within the church – bringing together and creating platforms for young performing artists across the Connexion. Our Hāhi is blessed to have a high calibre of creatives, many of which are contributing to New Zealand and Polynesians arts at the highest level. Creating opportunities for them to feed their gifts into the life of the church is an exciting prospect.
Let the Children Live
Let the Children Live enters its final year as a Connexional Vision in 2022. Work will begin shortly to reflect and review LtCL and its effectiveness. We will be inviting contributions from all corners of the church as we engage in this review, providing a chance to look back and highlight some of the key works that have been done. This of course while Mission Resourcing continues to provide quarter bundles of funding for children and youth initiatives via the LtCL Grant.
TYC Online or Hybrid Events
This year would typically have marked another Tauiwi Youth Conference but Omicron has gotten in the way. Preliminary planning is beginning around what can be offered as a form of Connexional Youth leadership training. We are excited by the possibility of what can be offered as an online/hybrid form of training for young people, especially in light of the success of Conference 2021 as an online event. Whether in person, online or in a hybrid of both, 2022 will include some opportunity for Connexional youth to gather in this new normal.
With the church also marking its bi-centennial this year, we believe there is a great opportunity to have young people and young voices involved in marking these celebrations.
Resourcing Your Ministry
Other resources continue to be developed and uploaded to our website for your use and contribution. Blogs, devotions, prayers, music, networking and more sit on our Mission Resourcing website. We also invite contributions from people across the church.
Though Omicron continues to cast a sense of uncertainty over the year ahead, we remain committed to Connecting, Resourcing and Inspiring young people across the life and breadth of the church. As the world has slowly come to terms with the reality that Covid has presented, we remain active in our attempts to keep the church moving in its mission and purpose. So even though Omicron has done its best to disrupt, we can keep calm, trust God and keep moving.
For more info on the resources above, visit our website www.missionresourcing.org.nz/youth