Sticky Faith Leaders: Building lifelong faith

Giving seniors a “graduation Bible” and hoping for the best just isn't cutting it. Roughly 50% of students walk away from the church after they graduate high school. 
That’s why FYI conducted its College Transition Project, studying over 500 high school seniors across the country during their first three years in college. 
It’s never too early or too late to start developing faith that continues to grow and lasts.  Sticky Faith gives ministry leaders a theological framework they can offer parents and families, along with a host of practical relationship and programming ideas that develop long-term faith in teenagers.

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The following books and films are designed to help you implement our Sticky Faith insights in your ministry and home.



Sticky Faith Leader Collection      Sticky Faith Family Collection

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Faith Beyond Youth Group

If you're tired of youth ministry that fails to change lives, it's time to change youth ministry.

Building on two decades of the Fuller Youth Institute's work and incorporating extensive new research and interviews, Faith Beyond Youth Group identifies the reasons youth ministry often flops both short-term and long-term, and offers five ways adult youth leaders can cultivate character for a lifetime of growing closer to Jesus rather than drifting away.

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Sticky Faith Innovation Online Team Training

Teenagers are constantly changing, and so is the world around them. Our ministry approaches need to change with them.
Our 6-session, self-paced online training will guide you and your team as you compassionately listen to your young people, respond creatively with fresh ideas, and take courageous steps to implement a new, purposeful approach in your ministry.


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What creates Sticky Faith?

Intergenerational Relationships

Despite the age segregation that exists in our churches and broader culture, each young person is greatly benefited when surrounded by a team of five adults. We call this the new 5:1 ratio.

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Whole Gospel

Many young people see faith like a jacket: something they can put on or take off based on their behavior. We seek to help students develop a more robust understanding of the gospel, one that integrates faith into all aspects of life.

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Partnership with Families

Research demonstrates that parents are the #1 influencers when it comes to spirituality in young people—yes, even teenagers. We help leaders develop new ways to partner with parents, empowering them to nurture faith in their families.

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A Safe Place for Doubt

Doubt is not toxic to faith; silence is. Young people want conversations in response to their hardest questions, not just answers. We offer tools and training for these discussions that deepen the faith of everyone involved.

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Meet Ian.
At 14, the breakup of Ian’s family shook him to the core. He questioned who he was, where he belonged, and whether or not anyone really cared.
Thankfully, a friend invited Ian to youth group at Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The church soon became Ian’s refuge. The warm greeting he received from both teenagers and adults showed Ian that he had a new home and a new “family” that cared about him.
While the congregation had always said they wanted to help young people know they belong, it was the church’s participation in FYI’s yearlong Sticky Faith Cohort that showed them how to turn that vision into reality. 

The church fully embraced Sticky Faith’s teaching that every kid needs five adults who are on their team. Who support them. Who are consistent.

Ian’s small group leader, Jon, was one of Ian’s five. Jon came to Ian’s basketball games. He helped Ian and the other boys in his small group memorize Scripture. Jon and his wife even relocated, moving to a house closer to where Ian and the other guys from his small group lived, so he could be near “his guys.”
Because Mars Hill also plunged into FYI’s Sticky Faith Service resources, Jon and other church leaders were able to help Ian discover his purpose. The youth ministry had always done mission trips. 

Through FYI, the church learned to maximize serve opportunities by creating a healthy process for students to experience service, receive encouraging feedback, and learn spiritual practices to help them reflect.

Ian went on every trip, and his heart became captivated by the needs of people in Michigan and beyond.
Because of the way Sticky Faith also shaped Mars Hill’s teaching, Ian came to realize his identity is grounded in God’s grace. 
When Ian blew it, Jon and other adults reminded him of a core Sticky Faith principle: “Jesus is bigger than any mistake.”
Jon keeps in touch and has coffee with Ian every time he is home from college. Ian’s decided to study social work so that he can help others experience the unconditional love and acceptance he found through Sticky Faith. 

Because of FYI, Ian’s faith has stuck.

Ian’s story shows that when young people are surrounded by a loving Christian community, they are positioned to become everything God intended for them.

FYI trains and works with churches and leaders every day to walk with young people building lifelong faith.

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Read about the Sticky Faith Research

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