All are welcome to a place where we encourage, lead and accompany our youth to claim their faith.
September 8, 2021 - April 27, 2022
Confirmation Ministry: Affirm
Introduction to program
Affirm operates on a four-year model in which 6-9th graders are all divided up into grade-level small groups, accompanied by an adult leader(s), as they grow in faith, learn more about the Bible and how to read it with curiosity and confidence, ask deep questions, serve God and our neighbors, and claim faith for themselves. After their first three years of Affirm in 6-8th grade, 9th graders grow into a capstone year called Affirm Plus, which will concentrate on building leadership skills in faith, including a growing awareness of their unique spiritual gifts and an ability to articulate what faith means to them, through reflection, creativity, and prayer.
September-October Bonfire Small Groups
Confirmation ministry is relational ministry, which during this time of COVID 19 being together is hard. To help build relationships, we kicked off the year with 5 weeks of outdoor small groups, gathered around bonfires. Thanks to our awesome small group leaders AND our team of fire starters for making these bonfire small groups a fun, relaxed way to gather in faith!
Fall Service Blitz 2021!
For our 2nd Annual Affirm Service Blitz, we served by packing food with Feed My Starving Children, baked hospitality banana bread for VEAP Food Shelf, enjoyed game night with our neighbor residents at Highview Hills, and created and delivered Thank You care packages to our Lakeville Fire Department at Station 1! All four service projects were a blast - thanks, Affirm youth, for serving our neighbors well!
NEW Family Milestones
Parents are the single most important influence on your child’s faith life. St. John’s wants to nurture the relationships of our parents and kids in faith. One new way we support this is by gathering parents and kids together for “Family Milestones,” a series of three sessions every year that will give parents and kids tools for talking about faith topics that are important, sometimes challenging, or potentially awkward. For these three sessions only, we expect a parent (or other adult relative or trusted adult) to attend with each Affirm student/family in order to engage together around these faith conversations.
This year, we dug into important conversations around "Mental Wellbeing and God's Love," with one week on each: Mental Wellbeing, Depression, and Anxiety. Thanks to ALL our parents and youth who showed up for themselves and for each other, and began the hard work of having open, honest conversations in our families about our mental health.
Lenten Mentor Conversation 2022
Additional Program and Curriculum Information
Lenten worship services were held at 6:30 pm in the sanctuary on Wednesdays during Lent. All Lenten services were also be Livestreamed on YouTube.
This year, family members serve as Lenten Mentors to each Affirm student. Each week, there was one (yes, only one) discussion question for each Affirm student to discuss with their Lenten mentor, engaging in a deep, reflective way on the topics "From Death to Life" each week.
Questions! Young people ask good questions. Our role at St. John's is to walk beside these young people and to encourage them to ask hard faith questions. We might not have all the answers, but we believe our faith grows and deepens when we talk about our faith questions. Curriculum is written in-house among the pastors on a three year cycle for 6th - 8th grade:
Year 1: “Jesus Is” - We take a look at Jesus as healer, advocate, miracle worker, barrier-breaker, rebel, teacher and savior. (2021-22)
Year 2: “Spiritual Practices” - We learn about a variety of hands-on ways to practice our faith and try them out. (2022-23)
Year 3: “I am a Lutheran” - We ask Martin Luther’s insightful question, “What does this mean?” about faith and life. (2023-24)
Grade 9 = Affirm Plus
During this transitional year of Affirm Plus, we will guide and encourage our 9th graders to reflect on how their faith has grown over their Affirm years, and begin to discern who God is calling them to be in the world. This year includes youth ministry service projects, mission trips, spiritual gifts inventories, faith statement development, and fun fellowship activities! They meet at the same time as Affirm, Wednesdays 7-8 pm.
Affirmation Sunday is April 24, 2022, with our celebratory worship service for these awesome young people at 2:00 pm. Every 9th grade family should have received a letter in February with details about Affirmation Sunday and steps to prepare for this milestone celebration.
If you have any questions, please ask Pastor Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org