A Ministry of Make and Deepen Disciples

Youth Ministry

Support teens and their families as they navigate their unique challenges of developing sexuality

Generational differences are real and require contextualized discipleship approaches-perhaps especially when it comes to human sexuality and issues of gender identity in today’s rapidly changing culture. Embrace will seek to provide resources that are especially tailored for youth and/or those who love and minister to them.

Featured Resource

Embrace for Youth Case Studies

This resource was developed by a team of Covenant youth workers. They invite quality discussion among leaders about how to better care for people in your churches and communities who identify as LGBTQ+. These case studies are based on real-life situations happening in our churches, camps, and ministry contexts across the Covenant in North America. These studies are not designed to provide official answers to the questions raised. Rather, they are designed to help you explore and gain clarity about how you would like to approach complex situations in your unique context.

Embrace Webinar #8: Tough Talks on Sexuality in Urban Contexts 

Follow the link below to view the webinar recording along with the resources that were mentioned during the conversation. 

View The Webinar #8 Recording ▸

Embrace Webinar #12: Teaching Biblical Sexuality in Youth Ministry 

Follow the link below to view the webinar recording along with the resources that were mentioned during the conversation. 

View The Webinar #12 Recording ▸

Embrace Webinar #18: Embrace for Youth Case Studies

Follow the link below to view the webinar recording along with the resources that were mentioned during the conversation.

View The Webinar #18 Recording ▸

Embrace Webinar #20: Emerging Gender Identities: Understanding the Diverse Experiences of Today’s Youth

Follow the link below to view the webinar recording along with the resources that were mentioned during the conversation.

View The Webinar #20 Recording ▸

Gay Girl, Good God: The Story of Who I Was, and Who God Has Always Been
By Jackie Hill Perry

In Gay Girl, Good God, author Jackie Hill Perry shares her own story, offering practical tools that helped her in the process of finding wholeness. Jackie grew up fatherless and experienced gender confusion. She embraced masculinity and homosexuality with every fiber of her being. She knew that Christians had a lot to say about all of the above. But was she supposed to change herself? How was she supposed to stop loving women, when homosexuality felt more natural to her than heterosexuality ever could? At age nineteen, Jackie came face-to-face with what it meant to be made new. And not in a church, or through contact with Christians. God broke in and turned her heart toward Him right in her own bedroom in light of His gospel.

Christian Sexuality Video Series

This youth curriculum is a 12-part, video-based, comprehensive discipleship experience that will help youth leaders, mentors, and parents engage their youth in one of the most important conversations of our age.

The Life on Side B Podcast 

Life on Side B is a podcast that looks at the lives of LGBT+/same sex attracted Christians who believe in the traditional sexual ethic of the Christian faith and therefore live according to that view whether through celibacy or a mixed orientation marriage. 

Listen here >

Guiding Families of LGBT+ Loved Ones
By Bill Henson

This 140-page illustrated guide is a treasure trove of practical insights on how to honor God and deeply love the LGBT+ people in your life. It covers a number of topics, including how to:

  • Respond well when LGBT+ people come out
  • Understand risks LGBT+ youth face (family rejection, bullying, suicidality, and homelessness)
  • Avoid using unintentionally offensive words and phrases
  • Build a support team for LGBT+ loved ones and their families
  • Engage LGBT+ individuals in trusting relationship over the long term

Devote yourself to prayer that blesses LGBT+ loved ones and yourself.

Spanish available at https://www.guidingfamilies.com/es.

Posture Shift Give Shelter Initiative

LGBT+ teens are at disproportionate risk for homelessness. Share Christ’s love by purchasing a wishlist item for a homeless LGBT+ teen in need.

Transgender at 11: Listening to Jazz Jennings
Interview with Barbara Walters 

Barbara Walters catches up with Jazz Jennings, a young girl who says she was born in the wrong body. After being diagnosed with gender dysphoria at age 5, Jazz began living as a transgender girl and has officially transitioned from male to female.

Emerging Gender Identities
By Mark Yarhouse and Julia Sadusky 

This book offers a measured Christian response to the diverse gender identities that are being embraced by an increasing number of adolescents.

Understanding Sexual Identity: A Resource for Youth Ministry
By Mark Yarhouse

This resource is a practical, compassionate explanation of how teens form their sexual identity in today’s culture. Yarhouse introduces readers to the developmental considerations in the formation of sexual identity, which primarily occurs during the teen years. He offers practical ways to think about homosexuality along with suggestions for talking with people who experience same-sex attraction. He also helps us learn to graciously respond to children and teens who struggle with questions of sexual identity, and discusses how youth ministry can become more relevant in the lives of youth who are navigating these issues. Pastors, youth ministry volunteers, and parents will understand how to help youth navigate today’s culture and form a sexual identity that honors Jesus Christ.

We Want to Hear From You

As we develop Embrace, we hope to receive feedback from diverse voices, especially with regard to existing resources or experiences which you have found to be helpful and effective. Feel free to connect with us anytime at embrace@covchurch.org.

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