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"We're talking about sex at CHURCH?!?"

The first week of a series on dating and sex is usually a little awkward.

Suddenly, even the most talkative kids don’t have too much to say! And it makes people wonder, do we really need to talk about sex in youth group? Isn’t this a topic we should reserve for the adult church?

Today, the average person is exposed to pornography at 11 years old. In High School and Middle School, sex is talked about in our music and on TV, in classes at school, and between friends. So if we don't have these conversations at home and at church, we're letting all the other conversations tell the story.

When it comes to attraction, desires, and dating, there’s always more to the story than what teenagers are seeing and hearing. We want to have these conversations in a safe and encouraging environment, so we can help support the sexual integrity of the teenagers in our church, and set them up for health in their future relationships and marriage.

In addition to having conversations with the teenagers in our student ministry, we want to provide resources for their parents as well.

While some of the leaders in our student ministry are parents, we’re never going to pretend that we're experts at parenting. In fact, we try our best not to give "parenting advice". Our role is not to tell parents how they should or should not be doing things, and we hope we never come off like we’re trying to say that.

We see ourselves in a supporting role for parents as they raise their teenagers. We’re here to help love and support your teenager, as well as provide resources for you to engage more deeply with your teenagers at home.

For the teenager with near prefect attendance at church, we get to spend 100 hours a year with them in our student ministry. But parents will spend 100 hours with their teenager every few weeks! We recognize that any impact we might have on the teenagers in our student ministry dwarfs the influence of their parents.

That’s one of the many reasons we love partnering with Orange. Orange is the organization where we get our content for Eastside Kids and Eastside Students, and they really are the best of the best. One of the things that sets them apart is their great content for parents.

With every series, there is a “Parent Cue” to keep parents informed about what we are talking about at church, and provide some ways to start conversations about it with your teenager at home.

HS Parent Cue
MS Parent Cue

Especially with a series on sex, there is a need for additional resources for having conversations with teenagers. This podcast does an excellent job guiding through the different phases of life, what conversations look like at each phase, and even more resources for parents. And you can watch this short video to get a general overview on what we'll be talking about with this series.

We full-heartedly believe that setting up parents for success will make the biggest difference in a teenagers faith. If there are ever any questions, or you are looking for more resources, do not hesitate to reach out.

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