Young People's Ministry

Pushing deeper where God calls us

By Christina Siewert, Hopewell UMC

I was blessed to attend the 2015 Youth Rally, titled "Masterpiece." After two years of absence, it was amazing to be back in Ocean City, Md., again. I am continually amazed by the way God can touch every single person’s heart throughout the weekend. And this year was no exception for me.

I was most amazed by the Rev. Brenda Salter McNeil’s presentation, “Mission Impossible.” She talked about how God calls each of us into situations that make us uncomfortable and doubtful of success.  She assured us that the Bible doesn’t promise us an easy walk of faith; but God calls us into difficult places in order to further His kingdom. In particular, she focused on the church’s call to further the faith of young people.

Pen-Del Youth Rally renders a vivid 'Masterpiece'

Like so many artistic masterpieces, there was a lot happening across the sweeping, kinetic canvas of the Peninsula-Delaware Conference's 2015 Youth Rally that occurred Jan. 9-11, in Ocean City, Md.'s convention center.  The stage, bathed in iridescent lights, pulsated with the loud, lyrical music of several, impassioned Christian rock bands.

Throngs of enraptured teens were jammed in front, many with their hands raised high, some jumping to the music's infectious beats. Some were texting messages and perhaps photos from their cell phones. After all, this was their Holy Ghost party, an annual youth extravaganza not to be missed. And it was a sonic vision to behold, especially for the adults who watched quietly but supportively from their seats beyond the stage area. "It's better they're here," they must have thought, "than anywhere else."

What being BLESSED means to me


Inspired by our church leaders, let me share what BLESSED means to me.  During this time of Advent, may you feel blessed and be a blessing to others.

Pen-Del Youth Rally 2015

Youth Rally 2015: January 9-11 at Ocean City, MD.

Early-bird discount has been extended for Eastern PA Conference till November 16th, 2014! Don’t wait.  Run (safely) to your computers, get online, and register your groups for the 2015 Youth Rally, today!

To register and download the brochure:

Christian Education is Like Silly Putty


The wisdom of what a person says is in direct proportion to his progress in learning the Holy Scriptures—and I am not speaking of intensive reading or memorization, but real understanding and careful investigation of their meaning. Some people read them but neglect them; by their reading they profit in knowledge, by their neglect they forfeit understanding.

-- On Christian Teaching, Augustine of Hippo

Christian Education is like silly putty.

That’s the thought I had one day as I began thinking about the beginning of September and the beginning of all of our Church’s fall programming.

Now the thought didn’t happen naturally. I was pondering writing an article on Christian Education that would be useful for youth and young adults. And I was stuck. Other than saying Sunday school and youth group is important, how do I write about Christian Education in a fun way?

Then my eyes drifted around my office until they landed on a bag of silly putty.

Piltz to lead Youth and Young Adult Ministries

New Coordinator of Youth and Young Adult Ministries David Piltz (rear, second from right) poses with members of the Conference Council on Youth Ministries after a recent meeting.

Longtime youth and adult ministry leader David Piltz, of Bristol Pa., is the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference's new Coordinator of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, as of Aug. 4. The Certified Lay Minister and Conference Youth Ministry Advisory Council member is a specialist and trainer in instructional design and organizational development in both church and corporate arenas.

Over two decades as a youth ministry leader, Piltz has planned, participated in and led Sunday school classes, meetings, retreats, mission trips and other events across three conferences: Wisconsin, Susquehanna (formerly Central PA) and Eastern PA. His decade of mission trip experience extends from Appalachia to Nicaragua.

EPA Sending a Youth and Young Adult to the Global Young Peoples Convocation in the Philippines

The Global Young Peoples Convocation and Legislative Assembly (GYPC-LA) is a quadrennial gat hering of United Methodist youth, young adults, and adult workers from around the world. As a co-chair of the Division on Ministries with Young People (DMYP), I have had the privilege to represent the NEJ, and have helped plan the GYPC for the past two years. The first Global Convocation was held in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2006, the second was in Berlin, Germany in 2010, and the third one will be happening in Luzon, Philippines this summer from July 16 – 20. As per the Discipline, each Central Conference and Jurisdiction is allocated five youth, five young adults, and two adult workers as voting delegates. Two delegates from the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference will be representing the Northeast Jurisdiction: Ashley Thompson, a youth from Wharton-Wesley United Methodist Church and Lauren Lomas, a young adult from Lima United Methodist Church.

Hope is seeing young people answering the call to missions

Nothing gives me more hope for the future of the church of Jesus Christ than to see young people be involved in mission work. 
Last week I had breakfast with Rebecca Parsons.  She is a Church and Community Worker with the General Board of Global Ministries.  She works in Roanoke, Va., where she is the director of four after-school programs for low-income children.  They feed the children a hot meal, help with homework, engage in a number of educational programs and also have fun. 
Rebecca coordinates more than 250 volunteers, writes grants, sends kids to summer camp, visits her supporting churches, arranges transportation and helps families in need.  She says that mission work sometimes means standing with a fire marshal and listening to a list of what is wrong with a building so you can make the place safe for kids.  It is also about creating a place where there is singing and clapping and messiness and the church being signs of God’s love in the community. 

Visit Bishop Peggy Johnson's Blog to keep reading: Hope is seeing young people answering the call to missions

Sharing Expertise to Help Local Youth and Young Adult Ministries

Youth and young adult ministries at United Methodist churches across the United States will gain more immediate access to support and resources with a new effort aimed at helping local churches share their best expertise.


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Bishop's Blog

Bishop's Blog

Read thoughts on faith and life from Bishop Peggy Johnson.