Christian Post: Youth Ministry, Virtuous Teen Magazine Help Girls With Self-Image
By Jeff Schapiro , Christian Post Reporter
The messages that girls receive from teen magazines are often discouraging and degrading to their sense of self-worth, because very few teens feel as thin, pretty or savvy as cover girl models appear to be. That is why Acquire the Fire is teaming up with Virtuous Teen magazine to help spread the word to teenage girls that God loves them just as they are.
Virtuous Teen is a combination of both faith and fashion, and will be made available, at no charge, to as many as 100,000 young people at over 20 upcoming ATF events this spring. ATF youth events are a part of Teen Mania Ministries, one of the nation’s largest Christian youth organizations.
The magazine was founded by Carli Jean Miller in 2009, when she was just a 16-year-old high school student. She, too, had felt the impact of the media on her own self-image, telling The Christian Post on Wednesday that she once felt she had to be “perfect.”
“I felt as if I could never live up to the standard … that they set of being skinny, being basically perfect and then being able to judge people by their looks and not by what’s in their heart,” said Miller. As a “teenager standing for purity,” she was also upset at how casually some teen magazines could discuss sex as if every teenage girl was doing it.
But she knew she wasn’t alone. She began speaking to girls at other churches, telling them that “the Lord loves them the way they are,” and that they should be more concerned with how God wants them to grow and change. That is the message she continues to share today through Virtuous Teen.
Missionaries “Come Alive” in India
A team of Global Expeditions missionaries serving in India traveled from their home base to 3 hours away. It was a region they had never been before – a place where farmers and shepherds were making their living and raising their families.
The group was told ahead of time about a previous missionary who had come from England to this village and who had given his life to reach the people living there, but when they arrived there were only a handful of Christians.
This team of student missionaries were normally enthusiastic and full of passion, but because of the intense travel and the fact that they’d been in India for 18 days already, the team was tired, short on energy and had even forgotten the chord needed to plug the their ipod into the sound box for their drama presentation of the Gospel. They arrived frustrated and, without even realizing it, had their expectations set pretty low.