Take A Boy And Rise Him A Man

The Mission view of the world Alliance of YMCAs in its centennial conference 1955

World Alliance of YMCAs is today the oldest and biggest youth movement in the world containing about 30 million members in more than 100 countries. However the international body has not been studied much.

This paper tries to reveal the growth and mission view of World YMCA in the field of boys’ work. It first gives an overview of the history of that work from 1844. At the first boys were only an exeption but 1878 there emerged a need to build bridges between YMCAs and Sunday School Associations. After that the

methodology (camps, scouts, four-fold programme, leadership training, youth conferences, work with unemployed and sick boys, physical education etc.) grew fast.

In 1913 YMCA held the first international assembly for the workers with boys - the first time in the history when a group of men caught a climpse of the problems of world boyhood.

In Centennial Declaration of the World YMCA 1955 there was a statement: "That the supreme purpose of the YMCA by which all its policies and practices must be determined is to bear witness, in language which youth can understand, to the saving power of Jesus Christ in the lives of individuals and in every human relationship."

The purpose of YMCA was thus to teach young people how to face the social-ethical international problems from the Christian basis.

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last modified 19.4.1999