30 Hour Famine as Story Creation


Tash McGill

30 Hour FamineI love camp. And anything that smells vaguely like camp. Any two days shared at a conference, a sleepover party, even seeing the same guests at your hotel while on holiday. It feels like I’m sharing something in common with you that can’t be replaced.

5 days together is a journey, 5 days apart afterward is a chasm.” I once wrote after a camp.

Thank goodness the 30 Hour Famine isn’t 116 hours or so, but the principle applies. The shared journey of that 30 hours is an amazing time to build stories and history for your youth group that will go on in their imaginations.

The great thing about shared experiences in youth ministry is the opportunity to create shared memories. Stories that are bigger than just one young person but include a spectrum of those they do life with. This living, communal memory is like a megaphone to the stories and lessons we can learn within shared experience.

Not only do Faminers experience the pang of hunger that comes from sacrifice, but also the story of what it felt like when we were hungry. Whether you do an all-nighter or Famine event for the weekend – or simply connect your young people via social media channels; it really doesn’t matter so long as they can be connected together and share the experience.

In little ways; like hearing about the student who had to cope through football practice on an empty stomach or the student who delivers pizza as their part-time job and being ‘thankful that’s not me!’, or the compassion that comes from trying to persevere through hunger together – when we journey together in any aspect of life, we have the opportunity to learn from our own experiences as well as the experiences of those around us.

So this Famine, how can you share the journey with the students of your ministry? Think about how you can create some shared history, so that in years to come you can remind each other of the experiences you had together.