Thursday, July 13, 2006

Notes from JYMO

I've been at JYMO (Jurisdictional Youth Ministry Organization) for most of this week. We are meeting at Centenary College in Shreveport, Louisiana.

JYMO is a nearly annual youth ministry event for youth groups, and especially youth leaders from the 15 conferences that make up the Southcentral Jurisdiction of the United Methodist Church. Most of the event is for leader training. There are daily sessions of Bible Study and worship services.

The youth take a large role in leadership in JYMO. They do an excellent job.

I have heard several adults stress that this is a "youth led youth event." I infer from this that as much as possible the youth are to run the event. I will admit here that I don't really buy this theory. I think that youth have much to offer, and that adults should listen to what they have to say. I also, however, think that youth still deserve to receive the benefits of being led, directed, guided, and taught by responsible, wise, caring adults.

One of the daily events during the three days of JYMO is a legislative session. This year the legislative sessions have mostly been filled by elections to various positions.

Imagine my surprise at finding that two fairly vocal proponents of this being a "youth led youth event" were very carefully and clearly instructing the individual youth from their delegations on how they should vote.

Perhaps the youth of their delegations didn't know for whom they should vote. Perhaps they didn't completely understand the democratic process.

I was thinking that maybe it would have been more appropriate to offer to help the students make their own decisions, rather than to tell them how to vote.


At 8:34 PM, Blogger Carol said...

That is wild! I just returned from Shreveport at 9 pm tonight! Actually Bossier City. How could we get our youth involved with this group? I'm always looking for ways to get them together with others to share ideas.

At 4:01 AM, Blogger J. Scott McKay said...

I attended that youth gathering in 1976 at Mt. Sequoyah. It was called JYME then. It was there that I met Kristi. We married 24 years later. We just returned from visiting there. I have yet to see anything called "youth led" to be truly so.

At 10:24 AM, Blogger Jim said...

That sounds like an exciting time. I've been reading your blog since I found it on the Methodist Blogroll. I enjoy your insights. I am particularly interested in your thoughts on a question that I've posted on my blog concerning the the upcoming young people's address for the 2008 general conference.

Take a look and let me know what you think!

Take care,
Jim Morrow


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