The Annual Conference report on Next Generation Ministries opened with a video from the Missouri Conference Remarkable series (available at https://vimeo.com/channels/moac17).
The video introduced the attendees to a 10-year old Grant Skelton, who believes that his ministry to fund raise the money to help the poor is “pretty successful.” He started his ministry with $50 that his grandparents gave him. “When I help somebody I understand how God feels when God helps people. I want to keep going.” He has raised $10,000.
Bishop Farr greeted Grant Skelton and introduced Jeff Baker as a new director of the Office of Next Generations Ministries. Next Generation Ministries Chair Ron Watts, senior pastor of La Croix UMC in Cape Girardeau, explained how camping and youth ministries from the Conference are reshaping to serve more local churches and help them reached unchurched youth in their communities. There are about 3,000 children and youth involved in Missouri Conference camping ministries this summer.
Jeff Baker expressed how excited he is to be in this new role. The last three years we initiated many new changes; we are trying new things and new ideas and create new ways to do ministry with children and young adults. Next Generations is all about finding new opportunities for young adults to serve Christ.
Next Generations is our best chance, Baker said, to reach those in rural and urban areas, rich or poor, whom we do not reach now because we simply do not see them.
Lastly, he said, if you have the opportunity to change the world, start with children, youth and young adults near you because they are our next generation.
“Look at Grant Skelton! He is only ten years old, but he is not waiting to get older to find his opportunities to serve. He is doing ministry right now. Take time to go to a baseball game with kids and youth from your church and your community. Be where they are. Support them. Most importantly, get to know them.”
Baker believes that children and youth look for opportunities to serve. We are here to inspire God’s children!