March 28, 2019 | Articles by Brandon Aten
As someone who grew up at Christ Church, I have always found it to be a welcome and inviting place for youth of all ages and interests. Youth groups, choirs, Scouts, retreats, and other events always kept me engaged.
It was in the youth ministry where I was able to form life-long bonds with many people whom I consider my best friends to this day, and lasting relationships with adults of other generations who took it upon themselves to mentor younger people in their most formative years.
Now that I’m an adult, I want to be present for the youth coming up, making sure they have a safe space for them to grow, play, but most importantly question the things they learn both inside and outside of the Church. Through mentorship opportunities such as being a confirmation sponsor, leading Sunday School classes, and helping the new gaming ministry, I have opportunity to connect with the youth centered around their interests, and can be available if they have thoughts, feelings, or questions they need to process.
As a game designer and publisher, I’m glad that I can share my passion for board games and role-playing games with many of the youth, in what has become a great creative outlet for our regular group. I’m excited to be able to watch them learn about and explore narrative storytelling, problem-solving skills, and group social dynamics, while developing relationships with adults and their peers. It gives me hope that when my children are old enough to participate in the youth group, they will find a loving and accepting community with which to engage, regardless of where their interests lie.