A place where YOU belong.

We are a close-knit group of 7-12th learning to better love Jesus and each other.

About Us

 The transition from kid to adult is tough enough. Refuge Youth Group provides a place where you can be real and learn about a God who is present and active in your real life. 

We gather together Sunday mornings for Youth Sunday school (9:45-10:45 am), Sunday evenings during the school year for Refuge Youth Group (6-7:45pm), and various activities and trips throughout the year. Each year during the week between Christmas and New Years, we take a trip for fun and service, and in the summer, we take either a domestic or international mission trip. 


Your (mostly) Fearless Leaders

Steven Shade and Kristen Howell have been youth leaders for 6-ish years at FUMC and have been friends for nearly as long when Kristen decided they would be. They share a love of nerd-adjacent activities, sensible shoes, and, most importantly, Jesus.

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Follow Jesus

Experiencing Jesus’ radical love changes the way we think, speak, work, and treat others. Also, Jesus was a fan of food and naps and we like those things, too.

Experience Community

We are a group of 7-12th graders (and their super cool leaders, we swear), from different schools, backgrounds, and interests.

Be Yourself

Your youth leaders are super excited to love you exactly as you are! No masks required… unless there’s another pandemic. (too soon?)

Share God’s Love

Loved people love people. We serve our church, our local community, and the world.

Refuge Youth Group

Join us Sundays from August to April, 6-7:45 pm in the youth room (basement of the Education Building) for food, games, and learning about God.

This year, we are discussing the topics from Pastor Dave’s sermon series so families can discuss what they’re learning together at home.

Youth Sunday School

Sunday mornings from 9:45-10:45 am (all year round), we meet in the youth room between first and second services to catch up with one another and take a deeper dive into scripture. Right now, we are watching and discussing videos put out by The Bible Project.

Mission Trip to Rapid City, SD

Monday, June 10 – Friday, June 14, we will be heading out to Rapid City, South Dakota for our annual summer mission trip. While we are there, we will be working with Solar Oven Partners  to build solar ovens that will be given to communities domestically and abroad that need access to ways to cook healthy meals outside.

We will serve from morning to afternoon and in the late afternoon/evenings, we’ll spend time at Badlands National Park, Custer State Park, Mount Rushmore, Wall Drug, and the Corn Palace. RSVP to Kristen and/or Steven by April 7 to join us!

Scholarship applications are out!

Scholarships are available for graduating seniors going into their first year of college or other continuing education (technical school, cosmetology, etc., as well as for camp, continuing education, and scholarships for students attending a United Methodist college.

Applications should be emailed/turned into the church by the priority deadline of March 31, 2024. Applications can be turned in after this, but the amount of scholarship will be dependent on funds available.

Scholarship Applications


Questions? Want more information?

Contact us!


Event Schedule

Sun., March 31

Happy Easter!

No Youth Activities

Sun., April 7

Last day to register for summer mission trip!

Please email Kristen and/or Steven and let us know you’re attending. This is a hard deadline. But we still love you.

Sun., April 14


Spring Youth Outing

FlipSwitch VR & Dinner

We will meet at church at 3pm and take the van to FlipSwitch in Kansas City, followed by dinner. Email Kristen and/or Steven by March 28 to RSVP.

June 10-14


Youth Mission Trip – Rapid City, SD


First United Methodist Church of Leavenworth