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Adults earn right to be heard, teens coming to Christ

By October 27, 2004

USA (MNN) — Teens in the United States are facing depression, anger, sexual pressure. They’re also facing a culture that is materialistic, acceptant of sinful behavior and peer pressure that’s pushing young people further away from Christ.

For more than 60 years, Young Life has been doing something about it. Currently reaching out to more than one-million young people, Young Life is using ‘contact work’ to reach these kids. Young Life’s Ken Tankersley. “Contact work is basically one of the foundations of the ministry for the last 60 years or so. And, it’s simply earning the right to be heard, going to where they are.” Volunteer leaders go where the teens are, and it’s a principle modeled by Christ.

They go to football games, local schools, local hang-outs and being an example and mentor to young people. Tankersley says, “We’re sort of in the business of re-framing the connotation of what kids view Christians as, their view of Jesus Christ, and God and Christianity.”

This type of ministry can’t happen without people, Christians willing to make a difference. Tankersley says the need is obvious. “Your in an age right now where volunteerism has slowed down and died for the last 10 to 20 years. So, our focus this year as in most others is, we’re a volunteer based organization. So (we need) to equip and train thousands of volunteers all around the globe is a key importance to us.”

Tankersley says Young Life is seeing a large number of young people come to Christ, but they’re also becoming active believers. “That’s one of the great things about a relationship based ministry is the desire to share their faith with others is inherent there because that’s exactly what happened to them.”

If you’d like to volunteer or help Young Life financially, go to their web site, http://www.YoungLife.org.

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