Youth Group Activities and Outings Christian Teens Love to Do

Youth Group Activities
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While many youth group activities are focused on Bible study, prayer, outreach, missions, and other spiritual pursuits, one thing some youth leaders forget is that Christian teens also need time together for fun and fellowship. Youth group ought to be more than just a place where students come to learn about the Bible; it should be a community where believers learn, grow, and enjoy life together as the family of God.

It's important for youth groups to plan activities that reach beyond Sunday meetings. Planned youth group activities, outings, and even trips help to foster close relationships between students. They also provide opportunities for teens to invite non-Christian friends who are wary of organized religion. Here are some ideas for outings that Christian teens just won't want to pass up.

Service Projects

Nothing clearly teaches "love your neighbor" more than getting out in the community and helping others. Projects can be as small or as big as you want to make them, such as raking leaves for seniors in the fall or doing odd jobs for them around their house; volunteering at the soup kitchen, women's shelter, or food pantry; delivering food or gifts to shut-ins or the homeless; organizing holiday gift drives on behalf of those incarcerated to send to their children; serving as aides in low primary-grades classrooms; or even pitching in with charities building houses in the United States, on American Indian reservations, or just across the border in Mexico.

Big City

If you live in a suburban or rural area, a trip to the "Big City" might be an unexpected highlight for Christian teens. Design a scavenger hunt or geocaching, giving teens clues to find certain places or people. To keep students safe and on schedule, you may want to assign groups and chaperones, set boundaries for exploration, and designate meeting places and times. To keep the hunt confined, it could be designed to find artworks or exhibits in a museum, giving students a new way to see themes and use critical thinking and creativity.

Camping

Depending on your preference, consider renting cabins for your students or camping the old-fashioned way in tents. Unless, of course, you prefer "glamping." Either way, time experiencing nature, appreciating and reflecting on the beauty of creation is time well spent, whether it's through nature hikes, kayak excursions, or just laying out under the stars.

This youth group activity involves careful planning to be sure you take all of the appropriate equipment, supplies, and food needed for the duration. Pack extras or do a group inventory before leaving. Many campgrounds and Christian retreats offer rental equipment, group meals, and other facilities.

Dinner and a Movie

Here's an easy hang-out to throw together that teens find inviting. Pick up some pizza and popcorn, choose a movie and a meeting place, talk, eat, and enjoy the show in good company. Choose a film that will appeal to a wide range of teens.

Comedy Clubs

The Bible says laughter is good medicine, and most teens would say amen. A trip to a comedy club can be a great time of making memories as a group. Some clubs cater to young audiences, offering clean comedy routines. Check with the club to see if they host events for youth groups or have comedians who use only family-friendly, age-appropriate material.

Caroling & Concerts

It sounds old-fashioned, but youth groups can make wonderful memories together by going caroling, such as to local nursing homes or hospitals. Sing holiday favorites, and provide hot chocolate or cider to listeners afterward, where allowed. Do note, though, that performing music for others doesn't have to be tied to the holiday seasons. Facilities look for programming all year-round.

Edited by Mary Fairchild