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Local Church Focuses On Teens And Their Parents

The Sanctuary's programs take a close look at all aspects of a teen's life.

When it comes to a kid's life at church, many adults carry memories of long and monotonous Sunday mornings sitting in a wooden pew. Nowadays, some churches have used that experience to bring forth a different approach when bringing their message to the youth.

One local church, The Sanctuary, has really embraced the idea, and is turning some pre-conceived ideas and first impressions on their heads.

Associate Pastor Jonathan Edwards is the person in charge of The Sanctuary's strategic plan. His laid-back demeanor tells you in minutes that this church is different. He certainly doesn't look like a typical fifth generation pastor, more like a hip dad that you meet on the soccer field and want in your circle of friends.

Pastor Jonathan's belief is that The Sanctuary is a community of lives, and their goal in the church is to first understand where someone is coming from and then try to help. They accept that we "all have issues" and realize that they are not exempt. From this methodology, they have created a safe place for their community to grow and have developed a team atmosphere of people who want to grow together.

If you visit their offices the first thing you see is a big framed piece of artwork that has their motto on it; "We grow a community of mature lives ~ one at a time ~ first by understanding, then by helping each person fully embrace God's love & truth."

Whether you're just looking for a place to worship on Sunday mornings or a safe environment for your children, The Sanctuary has a program to match. Girls Like Me, Champs Kids Ministries, Integrate for young adults and UTURN Youth Ministries represent The Sanctuary's attempt to connect on a very specific level with it's congregation.

It's no surprise that The Sanctuary's children, youth and young adult ministry programs are their most popular. Children today face more hurdles than ever before.

Pastor Tim runs UTURN Youth Ministries. It is a place for teenagers to learn how to deal with the pressures that come from every angle. Pastor Tim works to create an environment that is non-threatening, where kids can learn more about living a Christian life in today's world.

The ministry holds events like UTURN Wednesday, which is designed for those who "do not attend church and don't know how Christ can turn their lives around."

UTURN Sundays are all about growth - which is geared more towards youth who are already part of the Church.

They also have gatherings designed to "narrow it down" for guys, girls, Jr. High and High School students. They have time at the skate park, yearly camps, paint ball excursions, events, missions and outreach.

At The Sanctuary they encourage parents to be involved in their children's lives.

"It's a parent's job to raise their children," believe Sanctuary Leaders. "But more importantly, we believe we can help."

Time is set aside in UTURN Ministries for parents to learn tips on how to help their children navigate trials and tribulations when it comes to things like Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

To learn more about programs for your kids at, visit thesanctuarychurch.com.