Jun6ThuHow to access the new @theREADY youth discipleship resources. June 6, 2019 By Kevin Slous
"While we sleep, the world changes.” My wife, Sheryl, has been making this statement more and more as we meet with youth workers across our territory and our eyes are opened to the ever-changing realities of reaching, embracing and discipling the next generation.
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While the essence of our mission to reach “the world for God” remains consistent, we must adapt our methodology to the current context. It’s exciting to see the growing interest and engagement of leaders across Canada and Bermuda as they take steps to make their ministry efforts even more effective.
We’re at a time in our culture, our territory and the church when we must shift our approach to disciple-making. This shift moves us from a program-driven approach to a focus on outcomes. It goes beyond a cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all system to an emphasis on “getting the ingredients right.” It goes beyond just teaching and moves toward training to help young people integrate faith into their daily lives.
The @theREADY discipleship framework is central to this shift.
at the ready
[at • th uh • red-ee] idiom
prepared and available for immediate use or action
This is our vision for the next generation: that they would be @theREADY in their homes, corps, communities and world—that our ministry efforts would be co-ordinated to make CHRIST-centred, OTHERS-focused disciples at every phase of development, from preschool to emerging adulthood.
The @theREADY discipleship framework has now been approved by territorial administration as the prescribed standard for discipling the next generation in the Canada and Bermuda Territory. It offers flexible programming, consistent teaching and a vast catalogue of strategic tools and resources that can be shaped to a local context.
As with anything new, there will be some necessary learning to help leaders get oriented to new terminology, approaches to teaching, and the inter-connectedness of resources, programs and events.
Some key aspects of the @theREADY framework are:
- A common language, strategy and understanding of discipleship. The Canada Bermuda Youth team has developed a tool called the reCalibrate Equalizer to help ministries determine the effectiveness of their current efforts to make CHRIST-centred, OTHER-focused disciples. It helps them envision how their efforts could be “even better if.…” Ask your divisional youth secretary about training to use this tool in your division.
- An introduction of age phase categories:
- Ready to Crawl (ages 0-2)
- Ready to Play (ages 3-5)
- Ready to Explore (ages 6-10)
- Ready to Rumble (ages 11-13)
- Ready to Stand (ages 14-17)
- Ready to Launch (ages 18-25+)
These aren’t six new programs. They are categories that reflect how children and youth learn, grow and develop spiritually from infancy to early adulthood. Their names describe how ministries can prepare the next generation to be @theREADY in each phase, through a wide variety of resources, curriculum and programming appropriate to each phase.
- An emphasis on better partnership with and resourcing of families in the spiritual development of children and youth, so that families are READY@HOME as well.
- An integration of ORANGE curriculum, strategy and resources into discipleship efforts.
- An injection of Salvationist DNA in terms of doctrine, practice, mission and heritage into resourcing and programming.
- A reimagining of the essence of corps cadets for the 21st century in a Canada and Bermuda context as CC21c: Ready to Lead.
- The leverage of existing opportunities and new initiatives in a cohesive discipleship effort through partnership and collaboration with other departments and ministries across the territory.
The Salvation Army is partnering with ORANGE (thinkorange.com), a discipleship strategy and curriculum development organization, to provide corps with flexible programming, consistent teaching and biblically sound resources.
The organization gets its name from their ministry philosophy: taking the light of the church (represented by yellow) and combining it with the heart of the home (represented by red) to make ORANGE.
Our partnership with ORANGE also allows us to customize for a Salvationist-specific context.
ORANGE provides curriculum for each of the age phases from toddler to adult, giving clear bottom-line truths rooted in Scripture that help individuals learn and practise what it looks like to be a follower of Jesus. Tools are available for kids and families to help integrate those truths into daily living. Additional resources also include social media plans, worship outlines, shared family experiences, weekly leadership development tools, and parent and leader apps.
Our partnership with ORANGE also allows us to customize small group material and other resources for a Salvationist-specific context. We call this Deeper ORANGE. Our Deeper ORANGE resourcing is made from another red and yellow blend: our “blood and fire” heritage, doctrine, practice and mission.
Ready to Serve (readytoserveteam.ca) will continue to be our official junior soldier curriculum and program. It’s a three-year Bible-based curriculum that features videos, mission assignments and web-based follow up. Our Deeper ORANGE resourcing will identify which modules of Ready to Serve complement specific ORANGE curriculum series. Beyond Ready to Serve, we will continue to emphasize junior and senior soldiership, providing tools to help youth and children understand and live out these covenants.
Another exciting development in the works is the reimagining of corps cadets for the 21st century in a Canada and Bermuda context. We call this CC21c: Ready to Lead. Ready to Lead will give high school students and emerging adults leadership development opportunities and deeper discipleship experiences than they might otherwise receive in their local discipleship programming. Youth participating in Ready to Lead will be able to choose from a “menu of options” to go deeper in spiritual formation, academic competencies and hands-on ministry training.
Work is still being done on CC21c in collaboration with your divisional youth secretaries to provide experiences that are unique to each division. Watch for more information on the Ready to Lead initiative coming to your area in the coming months.
We’ve come through research, exploratory and pilot phases of @theREADY. We’re now entering an invitational and launch phase. What does this mean for you and your corps?
We’re inviting you to on-board early so that you’re ready for the official launch of @theREADY in September, using the ORANGE curriculum, strategy and tools available to you as part of this shift in our disciple-making culture.
Ask your corps officer or lead youth worker to contact your divisional youth secretary to get your access now. The Canada Bermuda Youth team will be providing a series of orientation and training opportunities to help you prepare for your fall launch.
We look forward to partnering with you to see the next generation prepared to be @theREADY CHRIST-centred, OTHERS-focused disciples in their corps, homes, communities and world.
Kevin Slous is the territorial director of discipleship in the children and youth ministries department. For more information on @theREADY or other youth resources, visit CANBDAyouth.com.
Photo: Cpt David Bond
Try ORANGE Today
Want to check out sample ORANGE material? Go to tryorangefree.com.
Scroll down the page and click “Yes! I want to try it free.” (You don’t need to click “Sign Up” at the top of the page.) You’ll be able to choose which age group curriculum you want to explore and will receive an email from ORANGE for each curriculum you choose.
Disregard follow-up emails from ORANGE asking if you want to purchase. Our territory’s partnership with ORANGE will include your corps, and will have its own pricing model that will make it accessible to any corps wanting to make this investment in the next generation.