What’s happening in culture should be important to every youth leader. Why? Because culture reflects the world our students are part of every single day. In this episode, join ministry leaders for a conversation about the tensions youth leaders are facing when it comes to leveraging culture in their ministry environments. Through their discussion you’ll discover when to leverage culture and when not to, and how you can begin to prepare students for culture instead of protecting them from it.



Why is it important to include culture in the youth ministry conversation? (3:00)

“When we are talking about students, we are primarily talking about pop culture.” – Steve (3:45)

“If you want to be relevant to an outside student, you have to consider what they like to see, watch, and listen to.” – Shef (4:30)

“If you are not culturally relevant, you are missing out on what could be.” – Sarah (5:00)

How do relevance and depth coexist in student ministry? (6:15)

“When you speak to students, you have to understand the culture of the students you are speaking to.” – Crystal (8:30)

“Playing relevant music in your environment is a great way to make an outsider feel comfortable and welcome.” – Steve (10:00)

Where does the idea that “culture is bad” come from? (15:00)

What tensions are youth pastors feeling when it comes to creating a culture for students to experience church? (18:15)

“Student communication has moved “underground,” and toward one-on-one and disappearing communication.” – Crystal (19:00)

“Leveraging culture is a huge opportunity to partner with parents.” – Sarah (22:00)

“Your age does not disqualify you from being relevant to culture; your interest in it does.” – Sarah (23:00)

If you’re not engaged in culture, find people who are plugged into it. Tap into them to learn what is relevant right now. (25:00)

“The ways in which you leverage culture depend on your own environment.” – Steve (27:00)

Always be aware of culture and make it part of your talks. (27:30)

“Are we preparing them for the culture or are we protecting them from the culture?” – Shef (28:00)

“Students know when you are leveraging culture just to leverage it.” – Crystal (29:00)

“What you say, do, and play from stage should be different from small group discussions or one-on-one conversations.” – Crystal (30:00)

Culture is inconsistent. (31:15)

“Pop culture mirrors what is going in on the world and in student culture.” – Steve (37:30)

“Any time there is tension between culture and students and their parents, there is an opportunity for the church to engage.” – Shef (38:00) “


Join the Conversation