But what does the church as whole know about it? How much do the parents know about what happens to their children week by week? If you are on a staff team, how much do your colleagues know about the week by week work with young people? By reputation, youth leaders can be a bit defensive about the work they do and fail to connect with other parts of the church. Unless you are passionate about youth church and totally disconnected from an all age body of believers, you are, like it or not, part of a community of God’s people. You are not running a distant outpost where you put as much space as you can between your work and the rest of what happens in that community. I remember a Sunday School teacher who, when encouraged to see herself as part of a bigger picture, said: ‘This is my department; these are my children — what happens to them after here is none of my business’. She was horribly wrong. Children have a habit of growing into young people who grow into adults. We can’t stop it happening so we must see their path to spiritual maturity (surely our aim) as one task to which many groups contribute.