b'Chapter Three -Families with TeensWhen he was twelve years old, they went to the Feast, according to the custom. After the Feast was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. After three days, they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding andhis answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, Son whyhave you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you. Why were you searching for me? he asked. Didnt you know I had to be in my Fathers house? Luke 2:4150 NIVThis is a remarkable scene from If ever there was a place where our Am I willing to make extra trips and Scripture for many reasons. My firstteens can find a solid footing to see faithadapt to different meal times so myquestion is, Why on Earth did it takecontinue to flourish through their youngteen can have his or her own space to Joseph and Mary three days to noticeadult years, it is in the Church. explore faith?that Jesus was missing? (I will save thatBefore diving into some of the stressorsAm I fostering my own spiritual strength for another sermon.) Lo and behold,facing teens and their possible responsesthrough personal prayer, Bible study and when they do find this nearly teenagerto going to Church, we must first lookthe practice of other spiritual disciplines?Jesus, He was not out kicking a ball,to what we have collectively modeled And here is a big one.hanging out at the ancient market orfor them. Only then can we understand getting into trouble with friendsno,from where our teens might be comingDo I contribute to the pressure my they find Jesus in the temple courtsnotin their responses to participating inteenagers feel by adding to their stress only learning but teaching! Not that weour Church community. Start by askingabout academics, extra-curricular have any reason to think Jesus did notyourself these questions: activities and social acceptance among hang out with His teen friends from peers and peer groups at school?time to time. Am I modeling Church faithfulness to the teens in my home? How you answer these and similar In the Parish Life Center, a large questions may say a lot about the role window portrays this verse. It is aAm I participating in Church beyondmodel you provide for the children in beautiful depiction you will see worship? Do I attend and participate inyour home.when we reopen, and it is a startlingChristian education, in fellowship, in reminder that even those beyond theservice? In the next few pages, we will look at years of childhood have to be in theirDo I model the giving of my time to myhow we approach teens based on your Fathers house. Church by serving in a ministry? responses to these questions.Unlike bringing children to Church,Do I model giving to the Church the presence of teens in Church rests by discussing my decision to give not only with their parents, but alsofinancially? with the teens themselves, for they Do I encourage them to offer their own are beginning to find their way gifts of time, talent and treasure?into adulthood. 11 - -'