by Erin Hicks
Suicide is something you will never be prepared for.
When I got the phone call last January that one of my youth had taken his life, but was still not legally dead, it wasn’t real to me. He was the youth who was always smiling, a teenager with a big heart. The majority of my youth had all grown up together. They were in a state of disbelief that their friend, someone many considered a brother, had not gone to any of them for help. Below are some ways that I helped my youth cope with the death of one of our own, including what I did while he was in a coma.
Each group and situation is different. All we can do is seek to live in continuous prayer, connecting us to God so that it is the Almighty who shows us the way. You know your kids, and the best you can do is to lovingly serve the kids whom God has entrusted to you.
Erin Hicks is a graduate of the Center for Youth Ministry Training and is pursuing her Master of Divinity at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Our youth want to be engaged and challenged with race and justice issues. And, we need to provide them a theological framework and opportunities to do so. Here are some resources that have come to our attention we recommend as you explore these conversations with your youth, families, and congregations:
Racism in America is a tragic reality. It’s part of our history and unfortunately, it’s still evident in today’s world. One of the things we can do as faithful Christians to fight racism is to grow in our own knowledge and understanding of those with different experiences than our own. To help get you started, check out these resources...
The Center for Youth Ministry Training joins the millions of people around the country and the world crying out for justice. We are praying for the families of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, for all impacted by racial injustice, and for all who are experiencing anger, fear, sorrow, and pain from these horrific incidents. We are concerned about how these killings and the deep divisions of our country are impacting all young people.