I recently had the pleasure of creating a new logo for the youth group at my church. For as long as I can remember, there was never really a solid, dedicated logo for the youth ministries. Different names for the junior and senior high groups came and went, but they seemed more like vague identifiers to differentiate the two as opposed to a definite name for the ministry as a whole.
The leaders of the respective groups decided that simplicity was best, so they settled on Central Student Ministries as the official name. The initial idea was to have two separate logos for the junior and senior high groups that could come together as one for the whole group (you can see the results of that below). The two logos would be a representation of the theme verses of each group but still fit together.
However, we eventually landed on the idea of having one main logo with slight variations for the junior and senior high, and using colors to distinguish the two. This lent a sense of unity to the group as a whole, but still allowed for an easy distinction to be made when necessary. They also wanted the text and icon portions of the logo to work independently of each other as needed.
In the end, what you see above is where we ended up. The icon is simple and obvious in its meaning (as a path leading to the cross or light shining from it, both goals of the ministry), and the text can stand on it's own and still have visual interest. Below you can see the jr/sr high variations, as well as the shirts that are being made and the first drafts we worked on.
Below are a few drafts of the original logos we came up with. The ideas of the crown and the flame related to the theme verses and the goals of the junior and senior high groups, respectively. We found that the explanation became too difficult which was a big reason we abandoned that direction. But I still like how they turned out, so that's good.