HISTORY OF PARENTS OF TEENS
AN OPEN LETTER TO PARENTS
Parents of Teens began in the year 2000. The classes are a result of a search that began in 1999 when I looked for wisdom as our kids entered the years of adolescence. At that time our son, Kyle, was 13, our daughter, Michal Ann, was 11, and our youngest daughter, Allyn, was 6 years of age and we were beginning to hit the typical issues. My husband, Howard, was told by a friend about Passport2Purity®, a resource for parents from FamilyLife®, a Christ-centered ministry to families. After some investigation I purchased the PP2P kit and very soon Howard took Kyle for a PP2P weekend using the same room at a resort that Michal Ann and I had used the day before while she and I also made our way through this exceptional resource. I knew that in Family Life Ministries I had found a support system.
Knowing PP2P had been a great start I went back to the Family Life website and found a packaged radio series called My Soapbox, featuring Dennis Rainey and Bob Lepine. The productions were creative and entertaining. Each of the eight 25-minute programs covered a specific “trap” of adolescence, issues to which I could relate, and the two men were passionate and friendly, giving practical examples of teen issues from their own lives at home. They came across as authentic to me. I felt I could meet them and like them. What I heard was solidly biblical. With their mentoring Howard and I slowly began forming our own roadmap for our adolescent family.
For some months I had been prayerful about how to spend some newfound time since our 6-year-old was now in half-day kindergarten. It all fell into place when I sent about 70 letters to friends, inviting them to coffee and to hear a small portion of the radio programs. Many of these women were attracted to the mentoring offered in My Soapbox so I offered to plan an 8-week class where we would gather and listen to one trap a week and discuss it together. That next Fall of 2000 thirty-eight women attended. A consistent group continued to meet every school semester each year. Many moms fondly recall our group being called Mothers of Teens.
Today we find that parents hunger for the same type of face-to-face support as they did in 2000. The principles have not changed, yet the culture has. I hope you consider joining a class or facilitating your own with a few friends.
INTRODUCTION TO JANA MORRISON
Jana Morrison, BSEd, MEd, is a graduate of Baylor University in Secondary Education. She earned her Masters Degree, specializing in counseling, at North Texas University in Denton, Texas. Before marrying Howard in 1984 Jana taught high school and Jr. High English, History and Physical Education for six years. She and Howard have been married thirty years and their children are ages 26, 24 and 19. Their two eldest are graduates of Texas A&M University and their youngest is currently a sophomore at Hillsdale College in Michigan.
Jana, a Texan by birth, is an accomplished pianist and guitarist and loves leading and mentoring parents.
The Morrisons live in Gilbert, Arizona, and can also be found in Austin, Texas, as they transition to an empty nest. Before moving to Gilbert Howard served on pastoral staffs at churches in Dallas, Austin, and Memphis. He is a graduate of the University of Arizona, Dallas Theological Seminary, and Phoenix Seminary. In Gilbert they have participated since 1994 with Howard’s farming family to develop residential neighborhoods called Neely Ranch and Morrison Ranch.
Together Howard and Jana have facilitated Parents of Teens classes attended by both moms and dads.