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D. Scott Miller

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  • Parish State
    MD - Maryland
  • Ministry Status
    Paid - Full-Time
  • Roles in Ministry
    Youth Minister

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  1. May the Peace of Christ and the sacrificial love of Saint Valentine be with you. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. Kara Powell of Fuller Institute offers three faith building tips that any youth leader might offer to parents. Tis’ the season. As we near spring, we begin to engage in the season of hiring. US Catholic magazine asks a related question and wonders if our hiring practices, especially when it comes to a rejection letter, have become a social justice issue? Last week, I posted about “small v” vocation assessments. I found this article from the New York Times about how colleges are becoming more intentional about vocational discernment. We should be looking to answer similar questions. Are we using all the parts of our community to help young people understand their own personal vocational call? In two weeks’ time, the Holy Father will gather Bishops from around the world to address the abuse crisis in the Church, For a wider perspective, read the Houston Chronical report on how this has also plagued the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest religious denomination in the US. Still got space in your life for a New Year’s Resolution? Want to be a better leader? Mark Cole has 11 Statements for you to consider in the remaining 11 months of 2019. On this week of Valentines' Day, know that you are loved... as a child of God but also as someone who accompanies young people in faith.
  2. May the Peace of Christ be with you as we enter into February. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. Not sure about you, but we cancel Sunday evening classes on Super Bowl Sunday in deference to a Sunday afternoon Souper Bowl of Caring service effort. Since we weren’t teaching last night, it might be important to consider what lessons were being taught through the commercials on the Souper Bowl telecast. Chris Wesley wants to know (and wants you to know) if your volunteers know Jesus? Just in case you were ever wondering about this as many states move towards legalization, Illinois Catholic bishops, citing a commitment “to the common good;” took a stand against legalizing recreational use of marijuana. A recent report indicates that most Anglican churchgoers have a 'total lack of confidence' in speaking about faith 'at all and with anyone', according to a report for the Church of England's General Synod. How might we develop a culture of invitation in our communities? FOR PARENTS: Service is defined as “Lending a hand to help someone else.” How can we teach our kids to embody this principle? How can we teach our kids to use their hands to give instead of take? ParishCue has some suggestions. Finally, here what’s been making me happy… I witnessed a presentation by Luke Burgis based on his book Unrepeatable: Cultivating the Unique Calling of Every Person. I feel as if it is a total game-changer for the next years of ministry for me. It has only been days since the presentation but there has been an abundance of blessings overflowing since then. God bless you for all that you are doing to lend a hand to help someone else by accompanying them in faith.
  3. May the Peace of Christ be with you as we enter into February. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. Not sure about you, but we cancel Sunday evening classes on Super Bowl Sunday in deference to a Sunday afternoon Souper Bowl of Caring service effort. Since we weren’t teaching last night, it might be important to consider what lessons were being taught through the commercials on the Souper Bowl telecast. Chris Wesley wants to know (and wants you to know) if your volunteers know Jesus? Just in case you were ever wondering about this as many states move towards legalization, Illinois Catholic bishops, citing a commitment “to the common good;” took a stand against legalizing recreational use of marijuana. A recent report indicates that most Anglican churchgoers have a 'total lack of confidence' in speaking about faith 'at all and with anyone', according to a report for the Church of England's General Synod. How might we develop a culture of invitation in our communities? FOR PARENTS: Service is defined as “Lending a hand to help someone else.” How can we teach our kids to embody this principle? How can we teach our kids to use their hands to give instead of take? ParishCue has some suggestions. Finally, here what’s been making me happy… I witnessed a presentation by Luke Burgis based on his book Unrepeatable: Cultivating the Unique Calling of Every Person. I feel as if it is a total game-changer for the next years of ministry for me. It has only been days since the presentation but there has been an abundance of blessings overflowing since then. God bless you for all that you are doing to lend a hand to help someone else by accompanying them in faith. FOR PARENTS: Service is defined as “Lending a hand to help someone else.” How can we teach our kids to embody this principle? How can we teach our kids to use their hands to give instead of take? ParishCue has some suggestions. Finally, where what’s been making me happy… I witnessed a presentation by Luke Burgis based on his book Unrepeatable: Cultivating the Unique Calling of Every Person. I feel as if it is a total game-changer for the next years of ministry for me. It has only been days since the presentation but there has been an abundance of blessings overflowing since then. God bless you for all that you are doing to lend a hand to help someone else by accompanying them in faith.
  4. May the Peace of Christ be with you as you continue the ministry and mission of Saint John Bosco (feast day: January 31) to accompany young people in faith. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. David Brooks, of the New York Times, recently reminded us all that Students Learn From People They Love. Always remember when sharing faith with young people in a gathering of 100, or a class space of 20, or a work project of four – which pretty much describes my schedule yesterday – to place the quality of relationships at the center of your evangelization and catechesis. My friend Marisa posted over at Project YM and challenged us all to imagine the March for Life as something beyond a once-a-year event on the streets of Washington DC or a large March in some other metropolitan cityscape . Being Pro-Life can be found in the in the small steps of the individuals you encounter in your daily ministry. Last week, I sat down with a potential donor who might fund our local participation in the National Day of Youth Ministry Training. If you have not seen information on this just yet, I invite you to take a good look at the opportunity for training, ecumenical interaction, and support for your volunteers that download youth Ministry is bringing together for us all for this upcoming September. Michael Sanem recently wrote on the Millennial blog about Flannery O’Connor’s The Displaced Person. In the midst of the abuse crisis, we find great discomfort as outside events and people seem to impact our environments can cause questioning of our own position and role. Sunday morning, Pope Francis made concluding remarks to those gathered for World Youth Day in Panama. You, dear young people, are not the future. We like to say, “you are the future”. No, you are the present. You are not the future of God, you young people are the now of God. He invites you and calls you in your communities and cities to go out and find your grandparents, your elders; to stand up and with them to speak out and realize the dream that the Lord has dreamed for you. All of the Holy Father’s WYD Panama addresses can be found here. Finally, where what’s been making me happy… the opportunity afforded me by the occasion of the commemoration of the day of my birth to just sit with children and grandchildren – Always a blessing. God bless you for all that you are doing to serve the Lord and ministering to our next generations – those that Pope Francis describes as the “now of God.”
  5. May the Peace of Christ be with you and all those who strive for unity and equality as we strive towards the Reign of God. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. As we commemorate the spirit of Martin Luther King, Jr., we might take note of Father Bryan Massingale insistence that “At its deepest level, racism is a soul-sickness.” In his US Catholic article To dismantle racism, we must heal the human spirit. And, that might be found in a revolution of values Were you aware that the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry was engaging in a prayer of consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus? Though that you might maybe not… Check out the daily updates on their facebook page and a full explanation here. Noted Christian Leadership guru John Maxwell suggests that if You Want to Grow, Cultivate a Teachable Spirit, He offers five practices that he has adopted in his own life and anticipates that a teachable spirit will become for you a reliable way to make transitions that last. Lifeteen has some worthwhile suggestions for your young people regarding how to practically live out God’s mission for you in the right here and now. Please pass along Start Living Your Personal Mission Now. This week’s LINK TO SHARE WITH PARENTS is one that I used already as an insert into my own parish youth ministry’s e-bulletin (via Flocknote.) It is important that we as parents continue to show our kids that Forgiveness Matters. Finally, here is a story that is making us happy this week. Last weekend, it snowed - -which means we celebrated that grace-filled event known as a “snow day.” For those of you who might not experience such a blessing, here is your ninety-second moment of snowy zen (which features a massive snow-ball fight outside the Washington Monument.) God bless you for all that you are doing to serve the Lord and ministering to our next generations.
  6. May the Peace of Christ be with you as we return to Ordinary Time. Here we go with another set of weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation. Here we go! From the business side of the world, Fast Company has recently explored Six Common Beliefs about Productivity that are Total Lies. I am confident that if it was written from the youth ministry perspective, it might include that extensive time on social networking or gaming sites does not really count as “accompaniment” of young disciples For those of us who think fondly back to the earlier Spiderman movies, the line “With great power comes great Responsibility” was often a teaching point. (See Video ) Recently, another business author, Seth Godin, offered a new take on the Spiderman Paradox. First and foremost, consider what this message means FOR YOU. And, then, I invite you to respond to the same challenge that I have set for myself – transforming this message into some final words for our Confirmation candidates who, about to receive great power, must rise to great responsibility Whew! Back to youth ministry, amIright? Youth Specialties is offering a prognostication regarding Five Youth Ministry trends for 2019. I was especially challenged by the last two- “Teaching them how to Care” and “From Bounded to Centered. The SEEK2019 conference, sponsored by Focus, concluded recently in Indianapolis. On YouTube, you can find an extensive treasure trove of videos for your own spiritual journey and/or your programming. This week’s LINK TO SHARE WITH PARENTS comes from Jenna Scott who writes at Parent Cue about Guiltless Lessons of Love. Finally, here is a story that is making us happy this week. Barry Corey, President of Biola University, an evangelical Christian college in California, had a “selfie” moment with Justin Bieber who was hanging out at the valet stand singing Marvin Gaye’s classic “Sexual Healing.” Here’s the Christianity Today coverage of this moment of encounter God bless you for all that you are doing to serve the Lord and ministering to our next generations.
  7. May the Peace of Christ be with you throughout this New Year. We hope to offer weekly news items to assist your ministry with pertinent information and formation Here we go! Recently, long-time youth minister Walt Mueller reflected on his many decades in ministry. He has come to clarity, as we all should, about what youth ministry is not about and what it should be about. Seventeen years after the Boston Globe first placed a Spotlight on the clergy abuse crisis, last week the US Bishops participated in a retreat requested by Pope Francis to reflect on where we find the American church in this time of continue turmoil over abuses. Pope Francis wrote a letter to them during their time of prayer. Please note the following quote meant not only for our brother bishops, but for all of us in service of the Lord. For the first time, it’s as likely as not that American children will be less prosperous than their parents. For parents, giving children the best start in life has come to mean doing everything they can to ensure that their children can climb to a higher class, or at least not fall out of the one they were born into. “As the gap between rich and poor increases, the cost of screwing up increases,” said Philip Cohen, a sociologist at the University of Maryland who studies families and inequality. “The fear is they’ll end up on the other side of the divide.” The New York Times recently offered insight into The Restlessness of Modern Parenting. Something we might all strive to be better at – for bishops, for abuse victims, for parents, or even that smelly, pimply seventh grade boy on the fringes of our weekly program – might be to practice listening. Oh, yeah, and listen to the Lord as well! Here’s a story that is making us happy this week: The lingering scent of incense is confused as someone suggested that a priest was wearing cologne. Read more here. God bless you for all that you are doing to serve the Lord and ministering to our next generations.
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