It’s an intimidating prospect when your child enters the teen years, but take a deep breath: These years come with challenges but also with blessings, as you watch your child spread their wings. Best of all, you might be overjoyed to watch your teen’s faith and relationship with Christ flourish.
A teenager is old enough to really take ownership of their faith and come into their own as a disciple of Christ. Sometimes they just need a little encouragement or direction about their faith. Adults can help the teens we love by connecting them with great spiritual resources.
To research this article, I went right to the source: I spoke to a 17-year-old relative who is very active in her faith, and to a friend who works in youth ministry. Their suggestions helped me compile this list of faith resources for teens.
I hope these resources will be helpful for the teens you know and love!
Ascension Press Teen Timeline
Ascension Press has a special focus on Teen Faith Formation. Topics include sacramental preparation, theology of the body, and Scripture. This is a great place to start for any teen!
My teenage friend said she and her friends like the informational videos by Fr. Mike Schmitz. She looks up his videos about various topics to understand things like Church teaching and Bible history, and finds his take interesting and helpful.
Endow Youth Studies
Endow (Educating on the Nature and Dignity of Women) creates enriching studies for women to dive deep into the riches of Church tradition. There’s no homework or advance reading: You show up as you are and enjoy a fruitful conversation. It’s a genius way to unite the Catholic intellectual tradition with intentional community.
Now Endow is offering studies made especially for teen girls. There are three for middle school and four for high school. It’s wonderful to see such a beloved resource reach the next generation!
iPray with the Gospel App
iPray provides the Gospel of the day and commentary on it. The app contains some common prayers, prayers for after Mass, prayer cards, novenas and a guide and examination of conscience to help you prepare your Confession.
My teen friend said she likes to use it to reflect on the Gospel before or after Mass.
The website has a beautiful description of how the app can be used:
The Gospel can be considered a Manual of Prayer, a letter written by the Holy Spirit to you. But God’s Word doesn’t live in a book. It comes alive when you pray about It. It is not about getting to know what the ‘Historical Jesus’ did two thousand years ago, what He said “back then”; Jesus Christ is not ‘back then’ anymore, He is alive, and is longing to talk to you.
Taking the Gospel of the day, the iPray provides a commentary that can be a trigger for an authentic and personal conversation with Jesus. That time of prayer spent with Jesus is like a ‘cooking pot’ in which you blend the Words and scenes of Jesus’ life, found in the Gospel, together with your daily life, your worries, your family and friends, all heated up by the fire of the Holy Spirit.
10 Minutes with Jesus
10 Minutes with Jesus offers short meditations and reflections to encourage prayer and friendship with Christ. (And there’s an accompanying app!)
My friend who works in youth ministry said she recommends this app often and it’s been popular with the teens she knows.
Online articles about Catholic life
Articles about specific aspects of Catholic teaching and Christian life are really helpful. These are easily shared and can launch great discussions. (And if your teen is up for a longer read, there are lots of great books for young adults, too!)
My friend who works in youth ministry recommends the Christian Life articles on OpusDei.org. She said, “These articles are fabulous on all sorts of topics. I use them as readings for discussion groups.” A perfect starting point is the series called “I don’t know how to pray. Where do I start?”