EDGE – Middle School

About The Program

The EDGE is a Catholic middle school youth ministry experience created for early adolescents in grades six, seven, and eight. It provides a safe fun place for youth to find solid Catholic community, to get answers to their questions about faith, and, most importantly, to experience Jesus in a profound and personal way.

At this age middle school youth are open to good and bad behaviors as well as positive and negative ideas. Many of the values and beliefs that they held as children are now questioned and challenged. As young adolescents they are trying to figure out who they are and what they believe.

In many respects middle school kids are on the edge because so much is going on in their lives physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially. It can be a very stressful and difficult time for them and their parents. As a Catholic Community, we are going to give our middle school youth The EDGE they need in life: Jesus, The Word, The Eucharist, and the Church!

Within the context of faith, middle school youngsters are moving from a child-like spirituality to one that will hopefully reach its pinnacle, through the work of the EDGE, into an adult faith commitment to Jesus Christ and the Catholic Community.

Why is it called EDGE?

The name “EDGE” recognizes that middle school youth are on the EDGE in their life, and if we as a church don’t do something about it, they’re going to fall off the EDGE and we are never ever going to see them again. But, at the same time, we as a church are going to give them the EDGE they need in life: Jesus Christ, the Sacraments, Sacred Scripture, the Teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, and a Catholic Community to love, nurture and challenge them.

Within the context of faith, middle school youth are moving from a child-like spirituality to one that will hopefully reach its pinnacle, through the work of EDGE, into an adult faith commitment to Jesus Christ and the Catholic Community.

Why is EDGE important?

Edge answers the needs of this age group in a catechetical, fun, and relevant way and provides a foundation for youth to continue onto Life Teen. Edge is a great asset to any youth ministry program, as it answers the unique needs of this age group while providing deeply impactful resources.

We all remember that middle school was awkward and difficult. That hasn’t changed. However, societal shifts have made the middle school years more difficult than ever. Today, middle school youth are having experiences that were common only with high school students just 15 years ago.

Threats of violence, availability of drugs and alcohol, and pervasiveness of sex and pornography are the new norm. Not only are they faced with these tough realities but they are also in the process of moving from being family-centered to friend-centered. Peers gain greater influence and parental authority is called into question. As they shift socially they are also experiencing tremendous changes emotionally and intellectually. As they wade through all the difficulties of this time of life, they have real questions and need real answers. If parish leaders ignore the unique challenges of their middle school youth, they risk losing them forever.

Edge Resources

EDGE is designed to meet the educational, spiritual, emotional, and social needs of young adolescents. Youth are always welcomed and encouraged to bring their friends to The EDGE. Edge resources speak to the physical, psychological, cognitive, relational, and spiritual maturation of middle school youth.

Edge resources make it easier for youth ministers to plan out their semesters of Edge Night, retreats, and to train a team of adults, the Core Team, to assist them in the ministry. The resources present Catholic teaching in a way that young people can understand.

This means that youth minsters get to spend less time at the desk and more time reaching out to youth. Edge provides many resources and support to help youth ministers reach out to parents and to connect with the families of middle school youth. What does this all look like here at St. Andrew???

Edge Nights

Its fun to learn about your faith with your friends. Our hope is that every Life Night is not just fun, but also challenges you to go deeper in your relationship with God and to know more about your Catholic faith. Life Nights are held on a weekly basis. We meet together Sundays, after the 2:00pm Mass until 4:30pm in the Life Teen Center.

Life Teen Mass

The most important part of every Life Teen and EDGE program is the Youth Mass. Key parts of a youth Mass are a welcoming atmosphere, reverent and relevant music, and an engaging homily that speaks to the issues in your life. You will see subtle differences in the way we conduct our Youth Mass, such as the Life Teen Band, a relevant Homily for teens and families, and Teens volunteering in all aspects of the Liturgical Celebration. Most importantly, the youth Mass remains sacred and timeless.

Retreats

Why would we have retreats? Because we know that you need a chance to get away from the drama of ordinary life and spend a few days doing nothing but spending time with God and with our Catholic community of friends.

Session Times (Edge Nights)

Sunday: 3:30pm – 4:45pm

Volunteers Needed

Adults are needed in the classroom! Training is provided. Safe Environment Training is required and available at St. Andrew for new volunteers or online if renewing. For more information, please contact re@standrewchandler.com.