devozine

For Youth Workers Post

WORLD CHANGERS

Darren Wright

 “In the Habit” session for use with devozine meditations for February 22–29, 2016.

MAKING THE CONNECTION 

“It can be a little daunting
the idea that we can change the world
       when we’re surrounded
              by stories of Mother Teresa, Bonhoeffer, Malala Yousafzai,
       especially when there’s so much wrong in the world.

“This session focuses on choosing one world issue, researching it, and discussing possible ways that the youth may be able to do something about it. I’ve chosen the chocolate industry, but you may choose another issue to focus on. The Stop the Traffic website has more information on human trafficking if you’d like to think about that issue.

“I hope the group gets a taste of changing something and wants to continue changing the world.” —Darren

MEET THE WRITER

Darren WrightDarren Wright is a Uniting Church Youth Worker serving in the Riverina Presbytery in New South Wales, Australia, as the Presbytery Education and Discipleship Worker. Darren has previously worked in congregational ministry, high school chaplaincy, and local government as a youth worker. His interests include music (Radiohead, Ben Harper, The National, Of Monsters and Men, Ryan Adams, Laura Marling, All India Radio, Florence and the Machine), film (Avengers, MegaMind, Harry Potter, How to Train your Dragon, Scott Pilgrim, Big Hero 6), TV (Chuck, Doctor Who, Big Bang Theory, Community, Agents of SHIELD), theology, pop-culture, working with young people in at-risk areas, and connecting the church and theology with pop culture. Find out more about Darren and his work on his blog.

STUFF YOU WILL NEED

PLUGGED IN

Resources

  • Kinesthetic prayer stations to help people engage in general prayer for fair trade and economic justice for the global poor—by The Sanctuary Centre

Books

  • People of Compassion, by Dave Andrews
    One of the best books out there on “World Changers,” People of Compassion is a book of forty short stories about men and women from all over the world, who lived lives of consistent, gentle, nonviolent service at crucial times in history.

Video

  • The Faith Effect: God’s Love In The World
    > Leader’s Guide + DVD
    Education Resources
    “While Christian faith is personal, it is never private. Christians are called to participate in God’s passion for justice and his concern for the vulnerable and oppressed.” This five-session interactive bible study, developed by World Vision Australia, is designed to help Christians become more informed about issues of global poverty and injustice from a biblical perspective.
  • Jesus, Bombs and Ice Cream” is a six-session video series about creating a world filled with peace by ending violence wherever we can.
  • Stop The Traffic
    Told through real life stories, Stop the Traffic explains what trafficking is, how it happens, how it affects us, and what we can do to make a difference.

CHECKING IN 

As group members arrive, have the room set up to be inviting and comfortable. Cover a table with different types of chocolate, enough to share with everyone. Be sure that at least one of the blocks is labeled “Fair Trade.”

Questions for discussion:
       What would you like to see changed in the world? in your neighborhood? in your school?
       What kinds of things can you do to bring about change?
        Do you feel that you can do anything? Why? Why not?

EXPLORING THE WORD

Scripture: Micah 6:8

Read aloud Micah 6:8 (NRSV):
   “He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
         and what does the Lord require of you
   but to do justice, and to love kindness,
         and to walk humbly with your God?”

Ask:
       What does this Bible verse mean?
       What does justice have to do with the Bible?
       What can we do to love kindness in our school? in our community? in our neighborhood?

Pass the chocolate around the group. As you eat together, have a conversation using these questions:
       What do you know about where chocolate comes from?
       Who picks the beans that are turned into chocolate?
       Where are the beans from?
       What companies produce our chocolate? What are they like?

Distribute copies of the documents listed below (as well as in “Stuff You Will Need”). Invite group members to spend some time researching the issues involved in chocolate production.

Then invite the group to watch the video “Working in Cocoa Fields at 10” from CNN’s “Chocolate’s Child Slaves”

Invite discussion:
       How do the information and the story make you feel?
       What can we do as individuals? as a group? as a church?

Find a couple of things that group members can do together to address the problems involved in chocolate production. Help them to put together a plan, and encourage them to follow through. Perhaps, for example, they can make sure the school canteen or the local supermarket only stocks fair-trade chocolate, they may choose to join the Stop the Traffic campaign, or they may want to do more research into the issues.

SHARING IN PRAYER 

Invite the group to pray this prayer responsively:

In a world of inequality
  Lord, help us bring your justice
In a world of hostility
   Lord, help us bring your peace
In a world of confusion
  Lord, help us bring your truth
In a world of unforgiveness
  Lord, help us bring your grace
In a world of need
  Lord, help us share your provision
In a world of greed
  Lord, help us to be generous
          Amen

From Fairtrade Fortnight—Ideas for Worship

TAKING IT FURTHER 

How about getting your entire church into the act? Run discussions and information sessions on the Cocoa, Tea, and Coffee industries, or focus on issues of slavery and injustice in the fashion industry. Invite people to think about what the church might be able to do in response. You might think changing the world is impossible, but people all over the globe will join you in your efforts.

—from devozine In the Habit (January/February 2016). Copyright © 2016 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.

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