Rite of

“And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.” – Luke 2:52
As a multi-generational church here in Parker County, we recognize that North Side is made up of all kinds of families – old and young, big and small – experiencing life and issues in so many different seasons. Our desire is to lead, care, and support you and your family no matter the makeup. One of the ways we are seeking to best accomplish this challenge is through our FAITH@HOME strategy which is based on a biblical belief that God designed the family as the primary place for discipleship.

To support this belief and your family, we have a great tool in our Faith Path initiative to partner with you as you guide your student’s spiritual journey one step at a time. It is based on age-appropriate kits that have been created to help you leverage the best faith formation strategy for your student’s stage of development. In this RITE OF PASSAGE kit, you will find practical ideas and suggested resources to help you give your teen a vision for adulthood. We urge you to start today by taking the following simple steps and look forward to watching your teen and family grow in your biblical understanding, relationships, spiritual discussions, and life application.

Check out the provided video that explains this particular Faith Path step. This video comes directly from the original launch of Faith Path and is used in a partnership with LakePointe Church. You will hear from both experts and ordinary families as they describe the importance of intentional parenting and share practical suggestions from their experiences. You will also find a guide that offers practical tips and what we consider the best resources on the topic.

To help you start, a Rite of Passage Planning Guide has been provided. Begin prayerfully considering how you will invite your young person to begin embracing the responsibilities of adulthood. We hope you find this kit helpful in the process of forming the faith of your teen at home. It can be life-changing not only for your teen, but your relationship with them and family as you walk through this kit and the Faith Path strategy together in the years to come. Feel free to visit with our staff below to learn more or to determine if your children are ready for other Faith Path steps.

Give a Vision for Adulthood

A Rite of Passage is a special event signifying a transition from one stage to another. This is an ideal time to affirm and help your teen anticipate and prepare to accept God’s plan for the future. Challenge your teen to leave behind the world of childhood and invite them into the ranks of emerging adulthood.

It is less important how you plan your teenager’s Rite of Passage than that you plan it. Some families host a simple dinner with family and close friends. Others do something more elaborate such as a road-trip adventure with various stops. Decide and plan what works best for your teen and your situation.
Step One: Create a plan to make this a meaningful experience. Read one of the recommended resources for more ideas or utilize the Rite of Passage Planning Sheet provided with this kit. A small investment of thought and effort will mean a great deal to your son or daughter.

Step Two: Invite people who have had an impact in your teen’s life and/or whom they respect. Give each person a specific topic on which he or she will speak or write a letter. Some topics may include work, marriage, integrity, faith, purity, family, etc.

Step Three: Make it easy for others to participate by providing them with recommended wording for their talk or letter in order to help them avoid becoming nervous or attending ill-prepared.

It is very important that parents use this milestone to give a blessing, usually in the form of a letter affirming the teen’s potential and expressing gratitude for his or her life. For more on the power and process of giving a blessing, check out some examples included in your kit. 

Take time to provide direction for the future. Cast vision and direct your teen in seeking the Lord as they enter a season of significant decisions that will impact the future.

Consider purchasing or making something to give your teen during this time. It doesn’t need to be extravagant. It is more important that it serve as a tangible keepsake of the event that your teen can hold on to for years to come. Ideas include a piece of jewelry, a book of letters/blessings, a sword for guys or a crown for girls.

The Rite of Passage event serves as an opportunity to set a new tone for the changing relationship with your student. Your role is changing from primarily teacher to mostly coach as he or she accepts the new freedoms and responsibilities that accompany young adulthood. Let your student know that you will be there to help him or her work through the challenges and navigate the landmines as they take ownership for choices and a future walk with God. Plan to create intentional one-on-one times to connect and keep the lines of communication open over the coming months and years.

Rite of Passage Planning Guide

Even the simplest rite of passage experience can have a powerful impact in your teen’s life. Ask yourself the following questions to plan the best approach for your son or daughter.

  • Is our relationship strong enough for the experience to feel authentic vs. forced?
  • Does my teen have other adults in his/her life who have had enough influence to participate in such an experience?
  • Does my teen show signs he/she is willing to move toward adult responsibilities and attitudes?

If you answer no to any of these questions it might be better to plan a special dinner alone together to begin meaningful dialogue rather than attempt the full rite of passage experience.

  • What day is best to make this event special? On a birthday? In conjunction with a holiday? As a special day of its own?
  • What date would work best for those who might need to travel to participate?

  • What relatives should participate? (Grandparent? Respected aunt or uncle? Older brother or sister?)
  • Is your teen close to a pastor, youth minister, teacher or coach he/she respects?
  • If you are not planning the event as a surprise, invite your teen to suggest who he/she would like to be included.

  • Would my teen prefer a formal event or casual experience?
  • What would be a good setting for the event? The house? Grandparent’s home? A favorite restaurant? The church? A park?
  • What kind of fun activity would our teenager enjoy doing with older men or women before the formal portion of the event? (For example, a teen boy might enjoy going to shooting range or golfing while a girl might prefer shopping or tennis.)

For additional ideas on planning we recommend the book Spiritual Milestones by Jim & Janet Weidmann & J. Otis and Gail Ledbetter. (Available from heritagebuilders.com)


How will you be intentional this next year?
  • Pray daily for and with my child.
  • Consistently spend time in God’s Word with my child.
  • Bless my child daily.
  • Schedule and have regular family times.
  • Create a habit of worship with my child.
  • Serve together as a family.
  • Schedule a time to bless and give my child a vision for the future.

The next step on the Faith Path is Launch, recommended at age eighteen. We will offer a Launch kit to guide you.

Spiritual Milestones from heritagebuilderspublishing.com
Rite of Passage by Jim McBride
King Me by Steve Farrar
Raising a Modern-Day Knight by Robert Lewis
Life on the Edge by Dr. James Dobson

© 2012 Inkling Innovations & Lydia Randall

North Side Staff Contacts

Andrew Williamson, High School Pastor
Jim Garner, Family & Missions Pastor