What is FISH?
FISH stands for “Fellowship In Senior High.” It is an outreach ministry of the State College Presbyterian Church to area high school youth – a program of the Education Ministry Unit.
In FISH the whole person is ministered to through a variety of activities, discussions, retreats and service/mission projects. FISH is designed to enable youth, with compassionate leadership, to develop strong moral and spiritual values. Leaders and youth together confront and discuss issues pertinent to today’s youth.
FISH is adults and youth in partnership. Its goal is to create a sharing and caring community to any high school youth wishing to participate. Without imposing religion, FISH leaders are called upon to share their experience of Christ’s unconditional love.
F.I.S.H is a Circle
A circle of friends, who stand together as an intentional community, committed to supporting and caring for one another. Joined by hands and hearts we recognize that collectively we are more than we are alone. The circle offers us a safe place to discover who we are and to be that together. It’s a place where we are invited to come alive!
A circle in motion rolling back, remembering those who came before, and rolling ahead, eager to support those yet to stand within it. Our tradition contains sacred rituals, rhythms and repetitions, songs, prayers, and celebrations.
A circle that grows, always maintaining room for one more. In the circle our differences are celebrated and our similarities affirmed. We remain open to growing in quality and quantity. We remain willing to take risks together, to try something new.
A circle that expands, reaching beyond to spread life and love to the world around. As members of the circle we seek to serve even as we are served ourselves. We practice compassion as our circle stretches to enfold others.
A circle with a center recognizing that wherever two or more of us stand together, the presence of God is there. It is a presence that takes on different names for different people, but in the circle we stand face to face and see the divine good shining in each other. From this center we learn love and forgiveness. From this center we are invited to shine on the world.
The FISH Format
FISH is made up of youth and leaders. Each week all gather at 6:00 pm on Wednesday nights at the church for a common meal. Following dinner there is a time for large group singing, fellowship and announcements. Typically, the large group then breaks into smaller groups for discussion of the evening’s topic. These groups consist of 2-3 leaders with 8-10 youth each-giving a small group feel in the midst of a large group program. The evening concludes following a large group closing circle beginning at 8:30 pm-a time of prayer and reflection. Besides the weekly meetings there are retreats, fundraisers, service projects, and a worship service. These activities help maintain a large group identity and give the youth an opportunity to interact with more of their friends and other leaders.
Click to download the FISH 2016/2017 Parent Handbook with more information about the FISH program.
Leadership for FISH is provided by a team of adults who work together with youth to create programs, develop projects, plan retreats, organize fundraisers, and decide on rules of conduct and policy. The most important work of the leaders, who range in age from 20 to 50+, is direct involvement with the youth to provide nurture and support.
Overall direction for FISH is the responsibility of the Associate Pastor for Youth and Mission, Michael Ozaki. Martha Trout, Program Associate/FISH Administrator, is responsible for registration, administration and the management of information. Amy and Mike Gordon serve as the FISH and LOGOS Kitchen Coordinators. They are responsible for coordinating cooking crews, menus and meal preparation.
Safeguarding Our Children and Youth Policy Requirements
View our Policies For Safeguarding Our Children (pdf). You can get all the information about our new policy which contains new requirements for EVERYONE who volunteers with our church youth in any capacity. All are required to complete and turn in a volunteer registration form and get child abuse clearances (and FBI fingerprinting/signed Affidavit) Please see the policy for all the details.