Glimpses into the Life of a Youth Worker

Contributed by Oliver Kelly, The NavTeens

Character Quest Competition 2018 BS prep

Captain Jia Ming preparing the teens for the BB National Character Quest Competition through Bible study on 1 and 2 Samuel, with the focus on David’s life. (Image credit: Oliver Kelly)

Despite suffering from gout pains, Oliver Kelly, a youth worker with The NavTeens (TNT), continues with his weekly routine of overseeing Bible Teaching based on the life of David for his Boys’ Brigade (BB) members from Christ Church Secondary School.

A recent BB National Character Quest Competition in September involved close to 700 boys across Singapore. To prepare the boys for this competition, Oliver led Bible study for 30 teens, where they explored 1 and 2 Samuel over three months. “The test questions can be tricky, like how many stones David used to kill Goliath,” shared Oliver. “While we focussed on teaching content, it was also the perfect platform to share devotions and the gospel. We delved into David’s life, his psalms and his character. We saw his humility but indignation in defeating Goliath, and his communion with God despite running for his life.”

Oliver Kelly Boys Brigade Character Quest Competition 2018

TNT Staff Oliver Kelly (standing, 2nd from right) and his boys at the BB Character Quest Competition. (Image credit: Oliver Kelly)

For Oliver, every activity is an opportunity to sow into the lives of the boys. “Studying the Bible called for high commitment amongst the boys. It also prepared the soil of their heart for seeding and harvesting. My Bible study group, an eclectic mix of youths from three different faiths, is one such example. Praise God that during a training camp prior to the Character Quest Competition, nine teens responded to the gospel! While our team won gold, our celebration and rejoicing was beyond this victory.”

Each week, over the course of two months, FamChamps Programme was held to help the boys recognise the importance of the family unit. Coached by Focus on the Family staff, this platform gave the 11th Coy Officers and Primers the opportunity to imbue in the youths the importance of living out the fifth Commandment—honour your parents. One way of doing so was through handwritten thank-you cards. “These boys were inexpressive and wrote nothing beyond two words—thank you,” he remarked. “To ensure they put sincere thought into it, I gave them 10 sentences to choose from, with opening and closing words. Multiple revisions were made before they presented it to their parents on ‘Honours Night’.”

Christ Church BB - Xmas Party gospel sharing

Primer Brendan sharing Jesus’ nativity story to the Boys’ Brigade during Christmas Dinner. (Image credit: Oliver Kelly)

Minji testimony Xmas gospel v2

Primer Minji shares his testimony at the Christmas party. (Image credit: Oliver Kelly)

Though schools are closed for the holidays, outreach efforts continue. A Christmas party on 8 December at t-Junction saw 35 BB boys hearing the gospel in Singlish! Primers, who are ex-students of BB, shared the nativity story from Joseph’s point of view. “It’s a guys’ story for guys,” Oliver quipped.

The year will end with a much needed Discipleship Retreat. Pray with us for our youth workers and young labourers to receive renewed vision for the Lord in the coming year, as they head to East Coast Beach to spend extended time with God during sunrise.