Sydney is going through another wave of COVID. The number of cases are rising and in response the government is putting strict regulations back in place. Until a majority of the population is vaccinated, this may be an ongoing trend.
For the safety of those in our community it is our responsibility to abide by the updated regulations provided from both the government and our Synod. As we already have experience of what it’s like to be in lock down, we have a blueprint on how to adapt for work, school and day-to-day life. We should also have a better understanding of how to adapt youth group during this time. We have already learnt how to gather online to run games and bible study during the pandemic, to keep our young people engaged with their faith and their community.
The question this time round is do we repeat what was done when we first started adapting to youth ministry during the pandemic or do we apply what we have learnt from those experiences and try something new?
Do we focus on how to make disciples in this new reality now that we’ve had some time to adapt to the new hybrid ways of gathering?
What does it mean to do mission as we observe rigid social distancing again?
I encourage leaders to take time to reflect on how to maintain a sustainable and flexible youth program throughout the fluctuating regulations. Make sure to check in with your youth if programs have to be cancelled and can’t be done online, even if just for a week. Also make sure to check in with one another as leaders, lean on each other and your shared experiences of navigating this space during a seemingly never ending pandemic.
May God continue to give you strength, wisdom and love through this time. Remember, you got this, and if you feel like you don’t, He definitely does!
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Ofa Foiakau is the Field Officer (Central/West), and Youth/High School ministry leader as a part of the PULSE team.