Aldersgate Church & Asset Building

During the Healthy Communities Healthy Youth pre-conference session, Marjie Brodersen, Director of Christian Education and Youth, Aldersgate United Methodist Church, shared this information about how her church has embraced and incorporated asset building into its programs. These ideas came out of her meeting with a committee to intentionally view how things currently operate, how they already build assets and what changes could be made to be an even more supportive congregation for young people.

Other Adult Relationships, Asset #3: We’ve implemented a different kind of Sunday School Program to involve 8 adults each week instead of 4. Half of these adults rotate so kids and adults in the congregation form relationships, the other half stay the same to give the kids some consistency.
Caring Neighborhood, Asset #4: The church hosts all neighborhood association events in their building.
Community Values Youth, Asset #7: Aldersgate’s youth develop and carry out everything for Sunday worship twice a year.
Service to Others, Asset #9: Aldersgate’s youth do one service event each month and a 10-day mission trip each summer. Our children’s program incorporates a service event each quarter.
Safety, Asset #10: Aldersgate has implemented a Safe Church Policy to protect children, youth and vulnerable adults from mistreatment and/or abuse.
Family Boundaries, Asset #11: Adult Education programming seeks to help parents learn how to set boundaries with training such as internet safety practices and helping children learn about money and spending with Nathan Dungan.
Creative Activities, Asset #17: We involve our youth and children in the practice and performance of music through our children’s choir and two youth hand bell choirs.
Religious Community, Asset #19.
Caring, Equality & Social Justice, Assets #26 & 27: Youth programming includes having our youth participate in 9 different service opportunities each year so they can see many different people’s life circumstances and how social justice issues directly effect people’s daily lives. They are pushed to explore how they can influence change in those areas and how they can be of help to others.
Planning & Decision Making, Asset #32: Our youth do the planning of youth group activities and have input into the curriculum for their spiritual formation programming through our youth council.
In addition, we recognize adult champions who are school volunteers or attend activities, etc. We have a mentoring a child program within the congregation. We also list an asset with asset building tips in the bulletin each week.

Marjie is pictured with the Aldersgate youth group above. She is in the bottom row, second from the right.