A proposed strategy for training indigenous youth ministers in Baptist churches in Singapore
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This dissertation proposes a strategy for training indigenous youth ministers in Singapore as a means to reach and disciple Singaporean youth. Chapter 1 defines the problem of Singaporean Baptist youth ministry and argues that current needs could be met by training indigenous youth ministers. Chapter 2 provides the historical and cultural background of Singapore. The characteristics of the church in general, as well as the Baptist church specifically, are explored. Chapter 3 analyzes the major global changes currently directing the shape of youth cultures worldwide. I assert that, in the same way that Singaporean youth are greatly influenced by the practices and lifestyles of the indigenous adults, they are also affected by ubiquitous global forces. Chapter 4 is entirely focused on youth culture in the Singaporean context. Singaporean youth culture is compared and contrasted with characteristics of both global youth culture and indigenous adult culture. Chapter 5 explores the history of youth ministry in Singapore. There is consideration of both church-based and parachurch youth ministries. The Baptist church's missed opportunities to reach out to youth and their current desire to take the necessary steps for student evangelism are highlighted. Chapter 6 proposes the missiological principles necessary for the justification of a cross-cultural youth ministry training program. Subjects discussed include the use of buildings, the strategy of multiplication, problems of dependence upon foreign leadership, and the importance of implementing a cross-cultural approach to reach youth. Chapter 7 proposes specific strategies to train indigenous youth ministers in Singapore on an informal basis. After the strategies of Youth Ministry International and Sonlife are examined, specific methods of informal training through the Singapore Baptist Convention are discussed. In chapter 8, I present a model of formal training that could be established at the Baptist Theological Seminary of Singapore. The model includes mandatory internships and a list of classes necessary to make up an undergraduate youth ministry major. Chapter 9 contains the conclusion of the dissertation.