The Church of the Resurrection has partnered with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry as part of the Young Clergy Initiative to encourage and equip the next generation of leaders for The United Methodist Church. The gathering is designed specifically to engage and empower young people across the country to pursue their call to ministry and to help further inspire and develop preaching gifts in those who have already answered that call. The Festival is intended for persons age 18–34 who are graduating high school seniors, college-aged ministry participants, seminary students, declared candidates for ordination, youth directors and young clergy already serving in churches.
The Festival’s Featured Preachers/Speakers include:
- Adam Hamilton
- Sarah Heath
- Kevin Murriel
- Jerusha Neal
- Charley Reeb
- Scott Chrostek
- Learning about the craft of preaching, sermon preparation and preaching skills from the panel of featured speakers
- Participating in inspiring worship and hearing some of today’s denominational leaders preach the gospel
- Preparing and presenting a sermon and receiving feedback
- Meeting and connecting with other young church leaders
This year’s event marks the third United Methodist Young Preachers Festival; previous Festivals held in 2015 and 2016 drew 150 participants each. The limited number of attendees allows for maximized time with colleagues and ministry leaders alike. Kyle Reynolds, a 2015 participant noted, “YPF gives you the chance to make connections with people you might not otherwise meet and begin to build friendships and dream about what the future of the church might hold.”
Affirmation of call is an important aspect of the Festival, and Bill Gepford provides an encouraging example of how the Festival influenced one of his young leaders: “…the coolest part of Young Preacher Festival came a few weeks afterwards, when one of our Pastoral Interns had the opportunity to preach at our church. He had never given a sermon before, but stood up and gave one of the best sermons I've ever heard (I still wish I could preach that well). People still talk about it - and it seemed to be one of the confirming moments in this young man's call to ministry. I'm grateful for the role of the Young Preachers Festival in training all of us, and making that moment possible!”
Additional details and registration can be found at www.youngpreachersfestival.org. Registration is limited, so register early. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 913-232-4139.