Martin Saunders delivers a rallying cry in Christianity magazine:
"As someone who's passionate about youth work, I'm finding it hard to control my temper right now. Across the UK I see youth ministry being de-prioritised by churches seemingly too busy with all those christenings, committee meetings and flower-arranging rotas. I see budgets being slashed, roles being merged or 'deleted', and a church that's gradually losing its connection and relevance to young people. Perhaps most frustratingly, I'm watching as many of the best and brightest in Christian youth work leave the specialism behind and embrace 'grown-up' ministry.
To some extent, who can blame them? The youth work job market has become unstable in the wake of the financial crisis, and even the roles that do still exist are often poorly paid and badly managed. Unlike adult pastoral roles, youth ministry offers almost no viable career path, and asks those workers with families to support them on a pittance. If budgets are cut further, they know they're at highest risk of the chop, while at the same time they're often the least valued and least recognised members of any staff team"