Home   e-Library       中文 
e-Library Home |  Browse By Category |  Study the Bible    
 (Manna 62: The Miracles of Jesus)
How to Maintain Youth Fellowships
TOC | Previous | Next

How to Maintain Youth Fellowships

Fellowship is an important element of one’s spiritual growth and maturity. Just as the newly baptized members in Acts often gathered to study the word of the Lord, pray in the Spirit, and bear witness to the love of Jesus Christ, a youth fellowship provides opportunities for members to gather in His name and mutually edify and encourage one another in faith, strengthening each other in the Spirit and the Word.

            For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them. (Rom 12:4-6)

The youth play a critical role in the holy work of the church. Along with fostering spiritual growth, a youth fellowship helps to retain the youth membership and encourages participation in serving the local church.

The youth fellowship’s foundation is the power of the Holy Spirit and of God’s word, so its members should be rooted in a life of prayer and Bible study. In this way, a youth fellowship can edify and nurture its members as they strive toward completing a successful journey of faith.


1. Provide spiritual edification for youth fellowship members.

2. Foster spiritual growth.

3. Testify to the love and joy found in Jesus Christ.

To help fulfill these objectives, it is important for youth fellowships to implement events and programs in different areas. Below is an outline of the different areas a fellowship should cover, as well as suggested events.


Bible study is the most effective way to understand the Scriptures because group study and discussion can bring mutual understanding—members of the fellowship can encourage one another and equip one another to serve the Lord.

In determining the Bible study curriculum for the fellowship, the main considerations are the fellowship’s objectives.

For example:

·         If a youth fellowship seeks to improve its evangelical outreach, it can study the Acts of the Apostles.

·         If a given fellowship has a small percentage participating in holy work, topics about serving the Lord may be useful in encouraging more participation.

·         If there are members undergoing trials, character studies may encourage all the members of the fellowship.

In addition to Bible study, special topics or workshops may provide youth fellowship members with other perspectives on how the word can be applied to one’s life. Ministers, church council members, or other experienced church members can share their insights on specific issues that youth fellowship members face in their spiritual, family, work, or school life.

Possible special topics:

·         spiritual issues: developing a steadfast faith, overcoming trials and tribulations, finding one’s calling

·         school/career issues: choosing a major, graduate school, or job

·         church issues: balancing service to God with school/career/family responsibilities, outreach to visitors and inactive members

·         family issues: dealing with non-believing parents, quarrelling parents, difficult siblings, baptized parents who do not come to church

·         life issues: dealing with serious illness, interpersonal relationships, dating/marriage, stress and time management

Periodic workshop sessions equip the members with the tools, skills, and direction to participate in serving the Lord. Possible workshop sessions include personal evangelism, survey of local church ministries, and holy work training.


In addition to Bible study, fellowship meetings provide a good avenue for spiritual cultivation. Examples of these meetings are as follows:

Hymnal/Praise Sessions

Hymn singing is a time to meditate upon God’s love, grace, and mercy through hymns or praise songs. Fellowship leaders can choose hymns focusing on a particular theme or topic and share their reflections between hymns. Asking other members of the fellowship to share their favorite hymns or praise songs is also an effective way to foster spiritual growth in the group.

Personal Sharing

Time should be set aside during each fellowship meeting to give members the opportunity to share recent events in their lives and to make prayer requests. Personal sharing may also include testimonies of grace or blessings received from God.


Discussion provides an excellent opportunity for fellowship members to share their views and experiences on a particular topic so that they will apply these concepts to their own lives.

An effective method for holding these sessions is to have the facilitator prepare questions beforehand and initiate discussion by sharing devotionals, personal testimonies, or reflections.

Mutual Caring

As the members of the fellowship are one body in Christ, it is critical that members continually care for one another’s needs. An individual member’s problem is also the problem of the fellowship.

Spiritual accountability allows each member in the fellowship to feel the love that compels them to care for and pray for each other. The following are some ways to demonstrate mutual caring:

·         Forming care groups in which two to three active members focus their care on particular “lost sheep” or friends.

·         Visiting all members. Visitation does not need to be limited to inactive members or friends; coordinators can arrange for local ministers and church council members to visit all youth fellowship members.

·         Having meals with members.

Plan functions that help strengthen the bonds among members. Some activities that promote teamwork, friendship, and Christian bonding are camping, team sports, cooking, and games.

A youth fellowship should bear in mind that the activities and functions in which it participates should glorify the name of God and promote the development of a bond in Christ.


Prayer is crucial to the spiritual growth of the fellowship and each member. Just like the apostles, members of the fellowship must also rely on the Holy Spirit for guidance and power. The Holy Spirit can unify the fellowship so that all members will work together in one Spirit and one mind to edify one another, spread the gospel, and serve the Lord.

For the sake of personal spiritual growth, each member should pray on a daily basis. Fellowship members should pray together in the Spirit at every opportunity and should establish a prayer time/location (or, if more convenient, at their own respective locations).

Prayer requests provide a focus for a prayer session. Such sharing further promotes mutual caring between the fellowship members.


The youth fellowship group should emphasize evangelical outreach as one of its primary objectives and work with the church to carry out this precious and important task. Jesus entrusted all believers with the task to preach the gospel to the end of the earth, and this commission should be reinforced in the fellowship.

Here are some methods of evangelism to consider:

·         Personal evangelism. The most effective form of evangelism is for members to share their faith directly with people they encounter.

·         Flyer distribution. Flyers can be distributed in residential or public areas, such as shopping centers and public transportation areas.

·         Community service/outreach. Community service is a unique opportunity for fellowship members to work as a team and, at the same time, introduce the church to the people they meet. Some examples include participating in community clean-ups, soup kitchens, homeless ministry, and nursing home visits.

·         Evangelical service. Members can invite friends to attend an informal or formal evangelical service organized by the fellowship. Regardless of format, its focus should be on biblical truth and life application.


Throughout the book of Acts, it is evident that the apostles constantly met to pray, sing hymns, and encourage one another. It is integral for a youth fellowship to meet regularly. The coordinators of the fellowship and the church council can work together to establish a consistent time and frequency for youth fellowship meetings. The locale of the fellowship can vary. Determine which locale is more conducive to carrying out the goals and objectives of the fellowship.

It is also important to maintain open lines of communication with the church council. In doing so, the council can support the fellowship members, who are usually between ages 18 to 40, as well as provide additional direction or insight. Continue to work with the church council to train members to serve the Lord.

A website or blog can be created to provide the most up-to-date information such as the fellowship schedule; member contact information; edifying testimonies, sharing, or devotionals; fellowship photographs; and links to the local church website.


PDF Download