Challenges of ministering to the youth:a case study of Presbyterian church of East Africa Langata parish, Nairobi county
Mwangi, Charles M
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This research is a study of PCEA Langata Parish and its response to challenges of ministering to the youth. PCEA is a mainstream church started by Scottish missionaries but has continued to experience low numbers of youth in services. This has created financial challenges, church membership and leadership gaps. The study sampled sixty three respondents, forty youths, ten church leaders, ten church members and three pastoral team leaders. The research employed questionnaires, interviews, observation and participation as the data collecting instruments. The study offers an analysis of historical background and development of PCEA. Attention was given to youth leadership and involvement in decision making in PCEA Langata. Youth programmes are assessed in response to youths’ needs and concerns. Challenges of ministering to the youth and responses are also identified. In responding to youth’s specific concerns PCEA Langata Parish formed two subcommittees to deal with matters of youth and make recommendations. Youth were given position of vice chairperson of church management board; more youth were involved in church activities like, praise and worship, making intimation and leading the service, more funding of youth programmes, strengthening performing programmes and revitalizing less effective ones. Challenges of ministering to the youth identified included: youth perception on adults and adults’ perception on youth, lack of adequate funding, conservativeness, and youth service or first service, preaching in youth service, lack of adequate training for those handling the youth and youth ministry as a transition avenue by youth coordinators. The analysis formed the basis of recommendation to theologians’ interested in youth work, sociologists interested in understanding modern trends in religious experience and urban life. In addition Curriculum developers in areas of theology and religious studies on handling matters of the youth .These recommendations would also be important to Non-Government Organizations, Government Departments and Churches with youth programmes. The study highlights areas for further research.
University of Nairobi