STM IGNITE, formerly “STM Youth,” relies on small group conversations oriented around the Bible story and Gospel message. Prayer practices, visual, auditory and kinesthetic activities are extended to meet children where they are. Primary concern is to invite children into a relationship with Jesus built on Christian practice.

Conversation topics are based on lectionary texts or social justice themes. Every other month a service project will stand in for a youth meeting. Service projects will be held on Saturdays and will last no more than an hour.

IGNITE meets on Sundays, (middle school) 3 PM – 4 PM, (high school) 4:05 PM – 5:05 PM and begins in September 2021.

What is an IGNITE meeting like?
We gather for an icebreaker (10 minutes), head to the gym or field for a game (20 minutes), and then come together for our small group topic, split into small groups, and then reconvene as a group for discussion, announcements, and a closing prayer (30 minutes).

Small groups consist of no more than five children; all are mediated by an adult. Topics are usually oriented around a lectionary text. Small groups are encouraged to engage the text by asking the following questions: What does the text say? What does the text say specifically to me? What is God saying to me through this text? What do I want to share with God about this text? Additional prompts will be provided.

We will also consider social justice topics (e.g., solidarity, care for creation, support for poor and vulnerable, etc.) in the same way. Members of STM’s Social Justice Committee will co-lead/lead meetings when we discuss social justice topics.

Do you have service options for tweens and teens?
Service is built into IGNITE programming. We have four projects throughout the year and each project will be tied to a lesson shared by STM’s Social Justice Committee.

Will IGNITE prepare me for confirmation?
Confirmation preparation is a separate program. But we encourage teens who plan to be confirmed to join us for IGNITE.

How can you help?
We need adult volunteers to help mediate small groups. Remember: all lessons are generated for you; catechists are not expected to have any teaching experience or a degree in theology. This is no different than talking with your children about your faith. The more we listen to children, get to know them, and respond to human ways the better we serve them. Contact Stewart Voegtlin (svoegtlin@stmga.org).