Our observation was that one of the primary barriers to young people understanding the Gospel was a language barrier. We believe is that it’s not the message of Christ that’s unimportant to young people, it’s that they are not hearing it in their native language. The teenagers we communicate with regularly are “digital natives” and in the same way we communicate differently with foreign missions we need to do likewise with students. There are very few guarantees in life, but one I can give testimony to is that if you try speaking to this generation in their native tongue you will get a better a response than if you choose not to. Getting rid of live large group teaching has opened up a new world of doing student ministry for us. That’s the beginning of the SwitchTV story…the beginning of a new way to do student ministry.
Student ministry is an interesting entity because every student ministry is truly unique, but it still manages to be done in nearly identical ways. Everywhere you go the same staples are being utilized to communicate the Gospel: teaching, games and music. That has been the standard cycle of student ministry for the last 20 plus years, but it seems that cycle had ran its course years ago. Currently we have an ever increasing amount of teenagers who are running away from church while retaining nearly nothing they “learned’ in kid’s ministry. This is not new information to anyone working with young people, but no one has come up with a reasonable solution either. In the fall of 2012 SwitchTV became our solution. I quit live large group teaching and transitioned towards small group centered viral teachings as the primary vehicle of our ministry.