A safe and welcoming place for 7th-12th grade students to develop friendships, be mentored, and discover Jesus.
“DNow” is Friday, November 7th to Sunday the 9th. This annual in-house retreat is for students, 7-12th grade, to break away from the busyness of the weekly grind and connect with God. The weekend includes experiential learning, serving, small groups, speaker, and live music. Students are placed in age-gender small groups, staying at host homes.
Our speaker, Aaron Thompson, will be guiding us through what Jesus meant in “the Greatest Commandment” (Matthew 22:37-39).
Disciple Now includes our annual “Crash” event for a night of worship. This year we are “crash”-ing at Wheaton Chinese Alliance Church with six other youth groups from local suburbs.
So put down the phone, iPod, and video game controller and sign up for DNow 2014!
Click Here to sign up (by Nov 2.)
“Loving our community” is such a blast. This past week, seven of our students participated in different activities. Between various youth staff, volunteers, and other students, those participating had someone in the crowd cheering loud and proud.
In addition to cheering for students, the event also presented an opportunity to care for each student’s parents. I had the privilege of talking to several parents before their students’ activity began. It was encouraging to see each parent talk about many aspects of their student (how proud of them they are, where they are struggling as parents, and how the parent is doing personally). Having these conversations reminded me of how vital it is that we not only cheer on these students during these activities, but that we encourage and support their parents as well.
Every student that attends a youth group program is encouraged to relay their sports, music, or other activities. Our goal is that each student will be visited once during each year. To sign up, go to storiesof.us/fanvan.
Why do Small Groups work? For many reasons, but let’s start with two:
First, it all starts with community. People love people, and especially people to whom they relate. There are many activities going on in students’ lives at this point in the school year. The balancing act of homework, athletic activities, and social media, on top of leaving time for hobbies, can cause a student to be starved of face-to-face social interaction with friends. Students need this time to unpack their thoughts from a busy work week with people that can relate.
Secondly, it is a time to discuss the practical messages in God’s Word and what they mean for our hearts and minds. The benefit of the smaller group is that everyone gets a chance to share their thoughts and unique understanding from the Scripture passage. Depending on the age group, the leaders give more or less structure, depending on the needs of the group. This makes each Small Group unique, allowing the Holy Spirit to tap on the hearts of students a message they can take home as they prepare for another school week.
Not connected with a Small Group? Check out this link for information on the time and locations of our Youth Group Small Groups.
Ever wonder why there are three Youth Staff? How do they work together? Who does what? Why did BC organize the staffing this way? As the Youth Staff lead, I would like to answers these questions.
Staffing Based on “Youth Ministry Core Focuses”
Each Youth Staff has “core responsibilities” as well as “shared team responsibilities.” Each Youth Staff has Bloomingdale Church staff responsibilities outside of the Youth Ministry. Youth Staff members are accountable to work as a team under the direction of Lead Youth Pastor.
Shared Youth Staff Roles
- Shared leadership at Friday Night Coffeehouse
- Rotate as lead & support roles in youth ministry events, retreats, and fundraisers (ex: Disciple Now, Winter Camp, Crash, Winter Banquet, onMission trips, LIFE)
- Student Internship mentors
- Support Lead Youth Pastor by promoting Mentoring Project and parent & volunteer care
- Support Community Outreach Director by participating in serving initiatives and/or outreach events and promoting Youth Alpha
- Support Discipleship Director by promoting Sunday Morning Youth Group, small group, and discipleship initiatives
Lead Youth Pastor // Daniel [& Amy] Riemenschneider
Pastoral Care of 11-12th Grade Students, Youth Staff Team Leader, Youth Ministry Vision Casting, Communications/Marketing, Mentoring Project, Parents, Volunteer Care, Media & Communications (web, video, digital signage, social media, branding)
Daniel Riemenschneider has served as the Youth and Media pastor since 2004. Daniel enjoys serving students because he was positively influenced by caring adults in this community as a teenager himself. Daniel attended Toccoa Falls College (Georgia) and completed a Master’s degree in Educational Ministries (2006) and a second degree in Counseling (2011) at Wheaton College Graduate School. He enjoys spending time with his wife, son, and daughter, friends and family, graphic design, exploring the outdoors, and climbing the taller peaks of the Rocky Mountains. Daniel married his longtime friend Amy in 2010. Amy enjoys serving the teens at church with Daniel as well as the larger community as a Registered Nurse at a local hospital. She loves spending time with her family, being a mom, and crafting.
Youth Community Outreach Director // Matt [& Christine] M
Pastoral Care of 9-10th Grade Students, Youth Community Outreach (Coffeehouse, Youth Alpha, Serving, FanVan, Prayer Team), Young Couples, Missions
Matt met his wife, Christine while they were serving as resident assistants at Malone University, graduating together in 2010. Matt studied Bible/Theology and Christine studied Integrated Language Arts. Matt completed a Master degree in Intercultural Studies at Wheaton College Graduate School (2013). Matt likes drumming, disc golf, coffee, learning about the Middle East, sports, and the outdoors. Christine likes yoga, cooking, reading, and spending quality time with friends and family. Matt and Christine can best be described as a fun and inviting couple who love to spend time with others.
YOUTH DISCIPLESHIP DIRECTOR // Nate [& Anna] Kugel
Pastoral Care of 7-8th Grade Students, Youth Discipleship (Sunday Morning Youth Group, Small Groups, Shepherding, Discipleship Prayer Team, PAK Liaison), Saturday Worship Pastoral Care, Some Media Roles
Nate and Anna were married in 2012 and are both 2013 graduates from Crown College. Nate studied Pastoral Leadership and Christian Studies, with a focus in Youth Ministry. Anna studied Elementary Education and Christian Studies with a focus in Pre-Primary Education. Nate plays guitar and a “sports junkie.” He enjoys all sports as well as cooking/grilling, hunting, board games, video games, and just being outside. Anna enjoys the outdoors as well, along with camping, playing her viola, gardening, basketball, photo editing, and running. They both come from Lincoln, Nebraska with a fiery passion for Cornhusker football and the occasional country music song. Nate and Anna love having people over as well as going on trips and playing large group games. Their real excitement though is to be used by God to make a difference in the students’ lives at Bloomingdale Church causing them to grow ever stronger in their personal relationship with Him.