Chandler Morse 11/26/18 ENGL Prof. Sircy Youth Pastors, Teen Depression, & Tragedy Our society’s youth have a lot of pressure from friends, bullies, family, technology, and their own personal goals/aspirations. With all that pressure, it is not uncommon for teens to be stressed or even depressed. But when it gets to the point where these teens take themselves out of this world thinking that this is the only resort to make everything better, then there needs to be some conversation and action happening. The Christian Church needs to help their teens (and congregation) in dealing with depression and suicidal thoughts. What are the best way Leaders and staff can do that? Each year, 44,965 people die of suicide, and 4,600 of those are teens, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention statistics (afsp.org). Out of these teens who have committed suicide, about 3.2% (Christianitytoday.com) of those teens either attended church for the first time and became members or came for the first time and then didn’t come back. The remaining 96.8% of those teens either attended Church regularly and were members or came to church every so often. With these statistics in mind, think about you or your kids and what topics are talked about in church. When was the last time the youth pastor or even the pastor talked about depression and addressed self-worth and self-love to the congregation and teens? Have you ever had a conversation concerning the seriousness of depression and suicidal thoughts inside the
church walls or even with someone in a leadership role within the church? This is something can be changed by simply talking about depression and Suicide. In the church, there are Youth Pastors (for those of you who do not know what they are) and they are designated for the teens of that church. A youth pastor is a pastor - not a junior pastor or any kind of pastor of lesser "pastoralness" than a lead or senior pastor. A youth pastor is first and foremost a pastor. This person is one who has been specifically called out by God to
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