1. Built Different - Kurt Cooper
Why is it that you feel the freedom to talk trash about your hometown, but the second someone from another place makes fun of it you get defensive? Why is it okay for an older brother to pick on his younger sibling, but when another kid does it, the older brother is ready to fight? In this elective, we’ll dive into the differences that shape our modern existence (race, sex, ethnicity) and explore how the Gospel and our identity in Christ speak to the things that divide us.
Kurt Cooper has served as the Minister to Youth at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Montgomery, Alabama since 2012. He and his wife, Marty, have two boys: Campbell (10) & Grayson (5).
2. FaceTime vs Real Time: Let’s Talk! - Lynne Grosso
In a semi-social distanced world with increasing virtual demands, have we forgotten how to connect in person? Join us as we discuss social anxiety, listening well, asking good questions, and how Jesus teaches us to engage with others. Together we’ll discover how Jesus helps us talk. All introverts and extroverts are welcome!
Lynne is the Assistant Youth Director at Westminster Reformed Presbyterian Church in Suffolk, VA. She fell in love with Jesus when she was 16, loves to smile and laugh and is a total fangirl for 90's boybands. Some of her favorite things are pizza, baseball, and glitter. Lynne loves meeting new people and has a passion for helping others discover the kindness of God through His Word, community, and conversation.
3. Walking with God: How to Walk with Jesus in a Meaningful Way - Chris Holland
Wake up, get ready for school, go to Class, go to practice, come home, eat dinner, do homework, go to bed, Repeat. How do we connect with Jesus when life is so busy and everyone is demanding something of us? Does Jesus demand a quiet time of us in order to be a "good" Christian? Or is there a way to walk with Him faithfully that doesn't make us feel like its just another thing to do to earn his love? Come to this class if you want to have a healthy relationship with Jesus in a way that doesn't set you up for failure and is beneficial for your soul.
Chris is Youth Director at Catalina Foothills Church in Tucson Arizona. He has worked with teens and parents in youth ministry for over 10 years and loves to dialogue with students about faith, gaming, sports, music, and food that matters. He is married to Amanda and has 4 kids that are just as weird as he is. His spirit animal is the naked mole rat and his favorite color is burnt red. If you're a psychologist you know what that means, wink wink.
4. Turn Down The Volume: Silence and Stillness Before The Lord - Drew Turberville
Our culture is getting faster, louder, noisier, and more chaotic with every hour. And whether we know it or not, that is damaging to our souls. God has given us the gift of silence and stillness before Him to center our lives around Him and to enrich our souls. In this class, we’ll study Scripture about why being still is so hard, why silence and stillness is a gift, and how to build this into our daily rhythms.
Drew Turberville is the Student Pastor at Riveroaks Reformed Presbyterian Church in Germantown TN. He has been there for over 4 years and has loved every minute of it! He and his wife Erin have been married for 9 years. They have three kids and a dog: Cole (7), Ellie (5), Whit (1.5), and Lucy (63 in made-up dog years).
5. How Doers Can Trust Jesus in Times of Loss and Suffering - Twila Masaschi
In this life we are promised that there will be suffering and heartache. In fact, the Bible says “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world”. (John 16:33) How Christians respond to suffering is one of the biggest testimonies to our faith in Jesus. It is important for us to see how the Lord illustrates to his people leaning in and trusting him during trials. The objective of our time is to see how Jesus loves and cares for us during life’s storms.
Twila is a volunteer leader with the youth ministry at Restoration Presbyterian Church in Dacula, GA. She is married and has 3 children - two in high school and one in college (RYM Summer Intern Kaelie!). She grew up outside of Atlanta in Snellville, Ga., attended the University of Georgia and received a degree in mathematics. She returned to UGA to earn a masters in Instructional Development and Design. Her career led her from classroom education in high school math to curriculum development for the state of Georgia. All along the way, she has been able to work closely with her favorite people - high school students. She takes great joy in watching 13 to 18 year olds navigate this journey called life, either in the classroom or serving alongside them in the community. When I’m not hanging out with youth, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends either around good food, lots of exercise, and anything coffee. RYM is one of my favorite places and I am thankful to be here.
6. What Can I Say Except You're Welcome - Tree Triolo
The Bible calls us to live out the love of God to others. This does not come naturally to us, but it doesn't have to be a daunting thing. In this elective we will briefly look at the book of Ruth. The story of Ruth is a beautiful picture of the hospitality to God towards someone that was a complete outsider. Throughout the course of the week we will look at how we can apply principles of biblical hospitality to others through simple, meaningful ways.
Andrew "Tree" Triolo is the Associate Pastor of Youth & Families at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Bryan, Texas where he has served for the past 4.5 years. He has previously served at churches in Mississippi and North Carolina. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte. Tree has been doing youth ministry in various capacities since he graduated college. He has a passion for youth ministry as he came to know the Lord during his high school years. Tree loves anything sports, developing and writing curriculum, and is a Star Wars Nerd (not all at the same time)! He has been married to his wonderful bride Jeri Lyn for 10 years and they have two children Adelina (4) and Michael (3)
7. Where Have All the Christians Gone? - Billy Meenan
Where Have All the Christians Gone?
The world and culture we live in today is becoming increasingly hostile to Chrisitanity. Many people we encounter at school, work, and social media, have lives and hold beliefs that are very different from the lives and beliefs of Christians. You may be finding it harder and harder to defend your faith to others, and doubt might be starting to creep into your own mind as well. Don't despair, you are not alone! From the very beginning God has always commanded His people to hold to the truth of His Word and remain distinct from the rest of the world and their false beliefs. And throughout history God's people have always struggled with remaining firm in truth. In this elective we are going to take a look at the life of Daniel's as an Israelite living in Babylon as a captive. We will examine how God protected Daniel, through His grace, and how Daniel was able not only to remain faithful to God but also have a very profound effect on his Babylonian captors! Join us as we discuss what it looks like to be a faithful Christian in a very un-Christian culture!
Billy is Pastor of Student Ministries at Highlands Presbyterian Church in Ridgeland, MS. Though he was born and raised in the beautiful state of Colorado, he and his wife, Christina, have called Mississippi home for the last twelve years. He has been in youth ministry for over twenty years and still loves it! He graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson. Billy and Christina have three children, Will (9), Evelyn (6), and Sam (3).
8. Permission for Emotions-how the Psalms can speak and give voice to the deepest cries of our hearts - Tim Pitzer
You became a Christian and now are enjoying new life in Christ, and yet at the same time you find yourself struggling with fear and anxiety as you live in and interact with the world around you. Often we are taught either directly or indirectly to get our emotions under control. Our prayer life turns into a rehearsed sequence of statements we consider safe and not too passionate while at the same time our hearts are screaming inside for comfort, for clarity, and for life. In this class we will look at how the Psalms give us permission to experience and profess real emotions about what God is doing, and see a model for restoring to us the joy of his salvation.
Tim grew up in Rhode Island and attended Clemson University where he met his wife Stephanie. He attended RTS Charlotte and has served in Youth and Family Ministry for 14 years at Clemson Presbyterian, Hilton Head Presbyterian, Watershed Fellowship, and currently at New Covenant Church in Anderson, SC. He and Steph have four girls; Ruthie (7), Clara (5), Iris (4), and Abigail (7 months). He enjoys cycling, running, and cheering on the Clemson Tigers.
9. Am I Really Saved? Struggling Faith, Nagging Fear, and Gospel Assurance - Jeremy Britt
I can be sure I have eternal life because ______.” At some point every Christian will struggle with how to finish that sentence, and the way someone fills the blank will have a huge impact on both their sense of God’s love and their convictions about the Christian life. So, how do YOU finish the sentence? This week, we will explore what God says in the Bible about our assurance of salvation, and how filling the blank with God’s answers can set us free from fear, so that we can glorify and enjoy him more fully.
Jeremy is the Pastor of Student Ministries at Lawndale Presbyterian Church, in Tupelo, MS. He has been working with youth for about a decade and loves coffee, football, meeting people and spending time with friends.
10. Bread, Light, Door, and So Much More! - Shane Whelan
When thinking about Jesus one of the most important questions we can ask is, who are you? Jesus asks us to give up everything and follow Him, so it is important to know and understand who we are following and why we should follow Him. Thankfully, in the Gospel of John Jesus gives us seven statements to help us understand who He is and why we should do what He asks. Jesus uses common language and metaphors to help us better understand exactly who He is. These “ I AM” statements will be the focal point of our time together and allow us to know the Son of God in a more personal and meaningful way.
Shane has been in youth ministry for 20 years and has served at Rivermont EPC in Lynchburg, VA since 2006. He is married to Laura and has three sons Luke, Jackson, and Sawyer. He enjoys spending time with his family, good food, sunsets, porch swings, and playing and watching any sport, especially Hail State!
© Reformed Youth Ministries