Christmas presents for leaders

Graeme Thompson

11.12.2017 | Congregational Life, Youth & Children

In the run up to Christmas, Graeme Thompson, the Presbyterian Church in Ireland’s Youth Development Officer, plays Santa and delivers some early Christmas presents to youth leaders to make their lives a little easier in 2018 with some home grown resources.

At this time of year most of us don’t want to think past 1st January but prefer to give our attention to looking forward to the advent and festive season.

However, youth leaders may have a thought for the New Year, at least in the back of their mind.  Those who have not planned a programme for their group from January may be wondering what resources they might consider and what might suit for where their young people are right now.

We may have a couple of early Christmas presents to make their life a little easier – home grown resources designed with Presbyterian youth groups in mind.

The two major youth events run by the denomination each year are Youth Night in June and the MAD weekend in October. This year the programme for each of these events was developed into a resource, which can be used in congregations, whether or not their group attended the events.  Each of these resources is designed to be flexible to suit each group and could be run in consecutive meetings, or over a longer period as part of a larger programme.


This is a four-session resource for young people learning the lessons of covenant for life today.  Each session includes:

  • Video material
  • Activities and
  • Small group questions.

The first session is based on the youth night programme itself, with an edited version of the main talk, interviews and an examination of the lessons from the book of Hosea.  The other three sessions include original talks from experienced Irish youth workers which look through that framework at key issues for young people: belonging, identity and serving God.

You can learn more and download the resources here.


This year’s MAD focussed on encountering God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit – and how young people can help their friends to encounter Jesus.  Each group was given a resource pack with a number or sessions and resource ideas, but this is available online for any group to use.

This includes:

  • Prayer activities
  • A session on encountering God in everyday life
  • Videos, which include stories from three young people on how they live out their faith.

The main talks from the event will also be added to this shortly.  There are also a number of resources from other organisations which can help you engage young people in this theme.

You can learn more and download the resources here.

Both these resources are free, but require the leader to register in order to download the material.


Graeme Thompson is the Presbyterian Church in Ireland’s Youth Development Officer.

You can find out more about the work of PCI's youth and children's department here.

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