Oddwalk Ministries


NCCYM 2016 Videos


This past weekend, Oddwalk was invited to take on several roles that exemplify the things we find important in our ministries, at the National Conference on Catholic Youth Ministry in San Jose, California.  We are grateful for these opportunities, whether it’s leading prayer, encouraging audience participation, making people laugh, or commenting on our retreat ministry.  Here are a few videos of those moments.


First, here we are, with Shannon’s wife Erin, singing a prelude before the Saturday morning mass, a piece by Orin titled “To Know Darkness,” published by GIA Publications and on our “Walk Away Different” CD.


Next, here we are talking a bit about our retreat ministry at a “Great Ideas” session later that day.


But a highlight for us of these NCCYM weekends is the “Youth Ministry Extravaganza” — a chance for folks like us, who “do what we do,” to thank the youth ministers (and others) in attendance and hopefully feed their souls through, among other things, humor.  We relish the chance to create original “set pieces” for this night (previously “May God Bless and Keep You,” “Songs We Should Never Record” and others); this year, thanks to an idea from our friend Erin Brennan, we created a segment where we pretend to be covering the Games of the XXIII Liturginerd Olympiad.


For a couple extra “goodies” related to the Liturginerd Olympics, click here! Thanks San Jose and the NFCYM for a great conference, see you next year at NCYC!

Oddwalk at NCCYM 2016


img_0394Where will you find us at NCCYM? Just check our handy guide:

— 12/1 3:15pm – Netsourcing session, music & liturgy N09
— 12/1 7:00pm – National Youth Ministry Award introduction
— 12/2 8:00pm – Youth Ministry Extravaganza
— 12/3 8:00am – Music Ministry for Daily Mass
— 12/3 2:15pm – Part of Great Ideas workshop

And of course in the exhibit hall when it’s open. Check your program books for more details. Hope to say hi to many friends old and new!

NCCYM Netsourcing Slides


netsourcingsildepicIn addition to having a great time at the NCCYM Extravaganza, Oddwalk was also invited to present a netsourcing session on Thursday afternoon at NCCYM, on the topic of music and liturgy. These sessions are a bit different than other workshops: our role was to throw a few relevant details to the conversation out to the attendees, and then spend about half our time letting them engage in conversations with each other and with us. The session seemed well received, and several people were heard saying things – to each other – like “that’s a great idea” and “I had never thought of that,” so we must have done something right.

Click the picture of the title slide or the link below if you’d like a pdf of the slides we used that afternoon.

Engaging Youth in Liturgical Life – Slides

Songs We Should Never Record – NCCYM 2014


songsweshouldneverrecordHello everybody! Boy, did we have a blast at NCCYM in San Antonio this past weekend – we hope you did too. We’re happy to make available to our visitors, absolutely free, various versions of our small piece of the Friday Night Youth Ministry Extravaganza, “Songs We Should Never Record.” Many people have asked us about video, audio, or lyrics – and they’re all here!

First, the video:


And, an mp3 you are free to download!
♫ SongsWeShouldNeverRecord.mp3 ♫
(use the pic above for artwork – click to enlarge – if you like!)

And a pdf with all the lyrics and a few of the images from the show: songsweshouldneverrecord.pdf

The mp3 is also out on the pOddcast now, if you are a subscriber!

We also want to add a special word of thanks to our friend Mike Kivett, who penned the words to “There They Go, Lord.” Mike is a great live audio technician, he helped us with our first couple self-produced CDs, and most importantly is an all around good egg. When he heard some our silly stuff we were asking him to record, he shared with us his little creation, and we’re certainly glad he did. Thanks, Mike!

And thanks as well to the NFCYM for a great conference as always, and great NCYCs the other years. See you next fall in Indy!

PS – A couple people have asked us about the lyrics to the “Stand By Your Man” parody we sang as part of the finale of the night. Those words were written by Bob Rice, here they are:

Sometimes its hard to be a pastor,
Caring for all those ministries.
Absolving all those sins, the roof is caving in,
And the youth room needs a 55 inch flat screen high definition TV.

Stand by your man,
Give him an ear to listen.
It’s hard, he’s always giving,
And you are kind of needy.
Stand by your man,
And even if he’s awkward,
Make him look as cool as you can,
Baby! Stand by your man.

50,000! Thanks!


50000visitorsApparently, while we had our head turned or something, our website had (at least since we started tracking these things) our 50,000th visit! Hooray! As near as Orin can tell, it was someone in California checking out the lyrics to our song from the NCCYM comedy event a few years ago, May God Bless and Keep You (Far Away From Me). We’re also over 100,000 page views, which is noteworthy.

Thanks, Oddwalkia, for the support over the years and into the future!

NCCYM 2012 Workshop Slides


For those looking for a handy download of the slides from our 2012 NCCYM Workshop (or if you’re just curious), click here! For those who missed it, Shannon and Orin led the room in sharing strategies and tips for connecting teens to the body of Christ – not in specific “use this icebreaker, play this game” sorts of ways, but larger, long-term strategies and techniques. Enjoy!

NCCYM and Wishin’ Wonderland


Oddwalk had a great time at the National Conference on Catholic Youth Ministry over the weekend in Orlando, FL. We saw a lot of old friends and met a few new ones as well. We also had the opportunity to share our ministry in a variety of settings, including the Center for Ministry Development booth, the Resource Expo Stage, a breakout session, and the Youth Ministry Extravaganza. All of these went extremely well. Congratulations goes out to the NFCYM staff and the Orlando volunteers for a great conference.

Since a few of you have asked us for the lyrics to the song we performed at the Youth Ministry Extravaganza, we’ve decided to list them here. Enjoy!


Wishin’ Wonderland
(parody of Winter Wonderland)

Adapted by Shannon Cerneka and Orin Johnson (Oddwalk Ministries)

Orin: It’s staff meeting Monday, I’m falling asleep, The principal’s fighting with the DRE,
Someone keeps moving the school desks at CCD.

No one really knows what it is that I do,
My office is tiny and my budget is too,
Meanwhile, down at the [superlong mega-seeker-church name] they have more money than they know what to do with,
I can’t imagine what I’d do with a budget like that…

Shannon: Well, let’s go walkin’ and wishin’ together. Orin: Together?
Shannon: Together!

We’d have a pool and a sauna
and the guys at Benihanas,
At youth group they’d make us lobster and steak, just Walkin’ in our wishin’ wonderland.

Orin: You mean, I’d never ever ever ever ever ever have to eat pizza ever again? Shannon: No Orin, never.
Orin: Wow!

And we’d pay off all the coaches
At the high school which encroaches on ev’ry event we plan ev’ry lent, Walkin’ in our wishin’ wonderland.

Orin: Wait, could we pay them off all year long, and like the band director and everyone else too?
Shannon: Sure!

Then in our fifteen-thousand seat arena we’d have praise and worship ev’ry night! Monday-Wednesday-Friday it’s Matt Maher. Shannon: Chris Tomlin at the others?

Orin: Oh, alright!

We’ll hire people who seem cooler
just to talk to middle-schoolers
And someone else who will play: hunter, bear, karate walkin in our wishin’ wonderland

During Holy Week we’ll play a movie,
Probably “The Passion of the Christ.”
Orin: What if all the teens have lots of questions? Shannon: Jim Caveizel will be there should they arise.

With such success, our pastor’s beamin’
We just might get one whole free weekend
And all alone we will stay, with Downton Abbey all day,

Orin: Hang on, I’m getting a text… it’s my pastor, it says, “Nice prayer at staff meeting, next youth group the pizza’s . . . on him!” Both: Walkin’… in our wishin’… wonderland!

More NCCYM Videos!!


Here are a couple more videos from our trip to New Orleans for the National Conference on Catholic Youth Ministry earlier this month. Thanks to YouTube’s SCRKmom1186 for posting these. The first is from our appearance on the Exhibit Hall Stage. Be sure to notice an appearance by Oddwalk friend, Butch Ekstrom, and a guy…