Youth are hurting, all around us. It seems that no post address, amount of money, or family heritage is keeping youth from perceiving themselves to be desperate for relief. A remarkable number of them are taking matters into their own hands. The problems of teenage angst are nothing new, of course, but the means in which teens are making to solve their own crises today appear to result in far greater levels of impact and frequency than in previous decades.
When I consider youth who are hurting these days, the incidents that are publicized highly and those that go unacknowledged, I am grateful for the women and men who serve as dedicated youth ministers across our country. Their heroic acts of being reliably present in practicing care, in my mind, too often go undervalued.
I am thankful, too, for tools like the online Encyclopedia for Youth Studies. If you are not aware of it, I commend it to you and your volunteer leaders.