pic 9

We believe that youth ministry thrives at the intersection of community and discipleship, where students are formed together into the likeness of Christ.
A thriving youth ministry is oriented around students’ formation as life-long disciples of Jesus. Over the duration of students’ involvement in the high school ministry, our hope and aim is to equip them to engage deeply in Christian community for the sake of Christian discipleship.

Our youth ministry vision is aligned with broader congregation-wide philosophy of discipleship. Click here to learn more about discipleship at First Pres.


Who is Confirmation Embrace For?

Confirmation Embrace is an extension of Confirmation Explore. Confirmation Explore is offered each spring for any 8th grade student to explore and deepen their understanding of the basics of Christian faith. Confirmation Embrace is for any high school student who is ready to commit their life to Jesus and take the next steps toward embracing this commitment with their life. There is no expectation for a student to take Confirmation Embrace simply because they completed Confirmation Explore. Participation in Confirmation Embrace signifies a big commitment in a student’s life and we encourage each student to prayerfully consider whether they are ready for this step. Each student should only sign up to take Confirmation Embrace when they are ready to make this commitment to follow Jesus with their life.

New Covenant Partner Class

Confirmation Embrace is paired with the New Covenant Partner Class that is open to anyone looking to become a covenant partner at First Pres. This class is four weeks long and is an overview of Christian belief, our Presbyterian denomination, and life at First Pres. The last class consists of meeting with elders of session and being confirmed as a covenant partner within First Pres. There are further instructions for those who have not yet been baptized. Students in Confirmation Embrace are expected to attend each New Covenant Partner Class. The class is co-led by Amy Carlan and Davin Thomsen Tang and meets in person (with safe pandemic practices) from 9-10am each Sunday of October at church. The dates are October 4, 11, 18, 25.

Confirmation Embrace Team Time

Directly following each New Covenant Partner Class, students will meet in person (with safe pandemic practices) from 10-10:45 each Sunday of October at church. During the Confirmation Embrace Team Time, students will have a chance to discuss the New Covenant Partner Class, sharing what “clicked” and talking through any confusing parts. Then, Confirmation Embrace Team Time will consist of lessons that enable students to embrace God (mind), embrace their identity in Christ (heart), and embrace life in Christian community (life). Each lesson is structured around Jesus’ command to love the Lord with all your heart, mind, and being/life (Matthew 22:37).

Confirmation Embrace Weekly Work

– Spiritual Practices – Each week, students will be given a spiritual practice to do each day. The time commitment is approximately 10 minutes daily.

– Reading Assignments – Each week, students will be given a short reading assignment that will help them prepare for the upcoming week. The time commitment is approximately 30 minutes weekly.

– Written Assignments – Each week, students will be given a written assignment that will be turned in the following Sunday. Each Confirmation Embrace Team Time will help the student prepare for the weekly assignment. The time commitment is approximately one hour weekly.

high school ministry small groups

The high school ministry is committed to providing space for students to grow together in Christ – to be formed in deep community and deep discipleship. Accounting for the pandemic, we have a plan where we can do this prudently and safely in person this fall. We chose to stop other programs and focus on these small groups in sensitivity to the chaotic times for students and families. We desire to create the easiest and simplest ways for community and spiritual formation.
There are two different pre-set small group times that students can register to join. Small groups will be capped at 12 students to stay well within the safety guidelines that our church has endorsed and to maintain the small group nature of the group. Each small group will be led by Davin and a volunteer leader and will take place in-person on Davin’s backyard patio unless otherwise communicated in advance.
– Small Group #1 – Tuesdays 6-7pm
– Small Group #2 – Sundays 1-2pm
Chairs will be safely distanced from each other and all surfaces will be thoroughly cleaned after each small group meeting. Students are encouraged to bring their own Bible, notebook, mask and chair.
Weekly attendance will be taken to ensure quick contact tracing and communication if someone contracts the virus
Students must register to attend the small groups and will be first-come-first-serve in the order in which we receive registrations. You may click on the registration button below to sign up.  Amy Hodges, our youth administrator, will send a confirmation email once your registration has been received.
Space is limited for each small group, so I encourage you to sign up early to ensure your spot. Students are encouraged to talk with their friends and sign up at the same time so they can be with their friends. If all three small groups are filled up, we will create a waiting list and explore options for your participation.
Since space is limited, please commit to participate weekly because you are taking a spot that could have gone to someone else.
Small Group Content
– Community – a cornerstone of these small groups will be simply to have space to be together as friends.
– Discipleship – once groups are formed, I will send a follow up email with information about what we will study together.

youth ministry small groups


Logistical Information

Where do the groups meet?

Middle School: Johnson’s house-contact Amy Hodges for address

High School – Davin’s house: contact Amy for address

What time?

Middle School

   -Tuesday nights: 5:30-6:30

   -Wednesday nights: 5:30-6:30

(Wednesday is full)

High school

  • Tuesday Nights 6-7pm
  • Sunday Afternoons 1-2pm

When do small groups begin and end?

Small groups begin September 8. We hope to continue small groups through the fall, ending December 13. At this time, Thanksgiving week is the only scheduled week off.

What happens if there is bad weather?

In mild bad weather (scattered rain, etc) we will continue to meet outside under waterproof canopy tents

In severe weather (snow, heavy thunderstorms, etc) we will cancel that week’s small group and resume the following week. We will do our best to anticipate inclimate weather early and communicate in a timely manner.

Can I just show up to a small group?

Please sign up for a small group ahead of time. This enables us to facilitate the safest practices during this pandemic season.

Where can I sign my student up?

Middle school: https://1stpres.com/middle-school/

High school: https://1stpres.com/high-school/

What will my student be learning?

Middle School: join us as we study through the book of Acts! We will take a look at the work that God was doing through the early church and how that parallels to the work He is still doing in the church today!

High School: We are kicking off the fall studying Christian leadership! We will examine how the Bible emphasizes character as a foundation to leadership and how God has created you with unique leadership gifts and skills.

Is it ok if we just come from time to time? We strongly encourage you to attend every week to enable these small groups to be the most fruitful time for everyone who signed up for the limited spaces available.

What will communication look like?

We hope to keep this rhythm as simple and straightforward as possible. If there are unforeseen issues that arise, we will communicate any changes as early as possible. Given how much uncertainty there is in this season, please be gracious with us as we do our best to navigate potential challenges that arise last minute and consequent communications to resolve those challenges.

What do we need to bring to small group?

Each student should bring their Bible, face mask, fold out chair, and a notebook/pen.

Pandemic Information

Is this plan Covid-proof?

While we cannot definitively say that there is NO risk involved, we can assure you that the students will abide by any and all safety guidelines that have been suggested to us by health officials (social distancing, hand sanitization, masks when appropriate, etc.)

What pandemic practices are in place?

Our pandemic practices will align with CDC and state recommendations, as affirmed by our church-wide posture. Pandemic practices may change throughout the fall depending on governmental restrictions and church-wide decisions. We aim to stay conservative in our approach to safety and we commit to clear communication prior to any changes. Our practices include:

  • Students will meet outside and seating will be spaced six feet apart.
  • Students will be expected to wear their face mask when not sitting down
  • Students will be expected to bring their own chairs to keep contact to a minimum. Also, Bibles, pens, notebooks
  • Attendance will be taken to ensure quick contract tracing and communication if necessary.
  • Students are asked to use the bathroom before attending small group. The bathrooms in the houses will only be available for emergencies.
  • Students will be asked to stay home for two weeks if they are showing signs of illness, have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, or has tested positive themselves.

The Following Routine Programming Has Been Put On Hold Due To Covid-19:

Sundays, September-may | 6-7:30pm | B-100

Join us for large and small group conversations. The primary aim of High School Youth Group is for students to engage richly together in Christian community to be formed as followers of Jesus

Sundays | 10 Am | B Building Basement

Join us as we learn more about God through studying his Word every Sunday morning!

Stay in Touch | Contact the Youth Staff:
Davin Thomsen Tang– Youth Director and High School Director

Amy Hodges – Youth Ministry Administrator

Instagram- 1stpresyouthws