Wednesday, June 11, 2014, Annual Conference Members and guests will attend a Plenary Session on this year's theme. Then each are invited to attend a session about a particular ministry area of interest: children, youth, young adult, camping and campus ministry.
Plenary with Chuck Foster
This year’s theme highlights two challenges facing every congregation of the North Georgia Annual Conference. The first challenge is to consider what faith will sustain our young people in the future? The challenge is a big one. Today’s young people have many more options for faith than did earlier generations. The challenge is also urgent. Many United Methodist young people are leaving our faith traditions and practices to explore and embrace those other options.
The second challenge is related. Because families are now smaller and since as many as two thirds of the young people baptized in our congregations are leaving our United Methodist congregations, what future can our congregations anticipate for themselves? Although outreach to the unchurched has long been a strength of United Methodist congregations, their continuing growth and vitality has depended primarily on incorporating successive generations into their faith traditions and practices.
These challenges cannot be met by new programs or strategies. If we take them seriously, they will change how our congregations view the young people in our communities. They will transform the ways we live out our baptismal vows “to surround them with love and forgiveness.” And they will engage our congregations in new quests to discover how the young people of today might become “true disciples” of Jesus Christ in the rapidly changing world that is their home.
These will be panel and participant discussions reflecting the needs of children, youth and young adults in congregations of every size and ethnicity in North Georgia. Moderated by Conference staff and leadership.
Camping Ministry: Partnering with Congregations to Make Disciples
Amazing ministry happens every summer at camp! Come and learn more about how our conference summer camping ministries can complement the work of your congregation in faith formation with the children and youth in your community. Get to know about Glisson, about our new Grow Day Camps and ELI (Experiential Leadership Institute. Hear about GO! (Glisson Outfitters – a resource for Adventure Camping for your church.) Learn some of our camping practices to take back to your congregation, and about a variety of programs our camp staff can bring to your church.
Campus Ministry: Connecting with College Students through the Local Church
Hear how your local church might offer ministry to and with college students in your own community. Learn what issues are important to college students and meet some of those who are actively engaged in college ministry on local campuses. Let’s share ideas about how your congregation can keep in touch with those away at college. .
Ministry with Children and their Families: Let’s Start at the Very Beginning
Grand Hall 1 & 2
Ministry with children and their families is where the disciple-making process begins. How does your congregation celebrate the children in your midst - in the sanctuary and in the community? Join us as we share ideas from diverse perspectives – large, small, ethnic, cross cultural, city and rural. Let’s talk about how children can be integral contributors to the whole faith community.
Young Adult Ministry in Your Community
Your church can help the young adults in your community become involved in social and mission outreach. Find out how to encourage this age group into being an active part of your church no matter how many young adults you have.
Ministry with Youth: Igniting Youth Ministry in Your Congregations
Grand Hall 4 & 5
As children enter their teen years, our faith communities have a unique opportunity to provide continuing nurture to these growing disciples. How can your congregation catch on fire for the youth in your midst? .