Many families are preparing for graduation day and their seniors launching to the next season of their lives. As a church we want to not only celebrate this milestone, but also help prepare them for what they will experience next.
Three ways you can help prepare your seniors:
1) Hold a summer group. Invest time in these young people during the summer months. You can intentionally plan a time of fellowship and study where you invest time in their spiritual development. Often once a student graduates, they are supposed to move from the youth group to the young adult group, but they may not feel ready for that jump. A few months of this type of transition group can give them a better foundation and a gentle exit from youth group.
2) Connect them with someone where they are going. For the students who are going to college, help them get connected with someone at a religious organization at their college or a local church. For the students staying local, get them connected with someone in the young adults’ group at your church who will invest in them or a mentor who can walk with them through this transition. It’s vital for young people to know they have a relationship they can lean on when they are going through such a huge life change. They are also much more likely to continue coming to church and stay connected to a body of believers if they have at least one relationship they can count on.
3) Connect them to each other. Using the summer months to help them develop stronger relationships with one another can provide an extra support system for these seniors before they enter the new chapter that fall will bring. For those that are staying local, it will be very stabilizing for them to realize there are other people who will be going through the same thing. For those going on to college, even if they may be at different colleges, they can still encourage one another and even hold each other accountable. One of the great things about social media is that it can create community between people even if they are physically distant. They can remind one another to stay in community and to do the right thing.
Although graduation can bring lots of positive life changes, it can also be an overwhelming time for many graduates. Your church can help make this transition more positive and less intimidating by doing these three simple things.
What will you do to help make this summer a positive time of transition for your graduates?