I am… a youth worker
James Willett shares the youth worker’s story
I love my job. Having a job which fulfils me and makes a difference in the lives of others is so important.
Two years ago, God called me from Bedford to Hythe, Hampshire. My family and I were instantly welcomed by the church, and I set to work on growing the number and spirits of young people. At the time of writing, the church has brigade organisations, a youth club and a toddlers’ group. I frequently visit primary and secondary schools in the area, to help children and young people wonder about God and discuss the Gospel. Very few days are the same, but here’s what today has been like.
I arrived at church this morning at 9.30am, and set to work writing an article for the local community magazine. I wrote about rest, and how I’ve started something new. I wrote: ‘I used to wake up and check on social media before I’d check on my wife. Now, the phone is left for an hour. A simple goal for some, walking on your hands for others. I’ve used that extra time to be with my family and listen to a devotion. Rest is so important that Jesus said: “Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.”’ The article offers an opportunity to share some food for thought, and points to Jesus.
Afterwards, I set about writing this article you’re reading right now. Article writing is not a regular part of the job. I am normally looking after my eldest son on a Tuesday morning. I’m sure it is not the same for all youth work positions but I have been afforded great flexibility with my role. If I am scheduled to work in the evening, I have been able to find time for family at another point in the day. I’m definitely blessed in that…
James Willett works at Hythe Cornerstone United Reformed Church, Southampton, Hampshire
This is an extract from an article that was published in the April 2020 edition of Reform