Jan 09, 2024

Join fellow youth ministry leaders for a day of enrichment, networking, and skill-building at the IGNITE Youth Leaders Day.

Mecan Payne, EPA&GNJ NextGen Program Specialist

EPA&GNJ will fan the flame of its IGNITE creative youth ministries with two upcoming events designed to empower youth leaders and the young people they serve. The collaborative NextGen Ministries initiative will sponsor Youth Leader Days on two Saturdays—January 27 at West Chester UMC, in Eastern PA, and February 24 at Aldersgate UMC in East Brunswick, New Jersey. Both gatherings will start at 10 a.m. (check-in time: 9:30) and end at 3 p.m.

Michael Nelson

Worship, workshops, plenary presentations, networking and idea-sharing will offer mentors of next generation leaders in both conferences a taste of what they might experience at GNJ’s yearly IGNITE youth conferences at Wildwood, but with an agenda totally geared toward them and their needs.

IGNITE NextGen Ministries Coordinator Michael Nelson, who directs youth ministries at Norwood UMC in EPA, will keynote the event, sharing insights about “Igniting the Leader Within.” He started Norwood’s growing, intentionally multiracial youth ministry from scratch in 2021 and now helps other EPA churches explore creative ideas for growth in this important ministry arena.

Josh Good

Longtime youth pastor Josh Good, now Ministry Director at Christian Endeavor, will facilitate a session titled “Less Like Hippos… More Like Honeybees: Empowering Youth in Ministry.” It’s about empowering youth in leadership, ministry and life. “Young people have incredible spiritual potential,” he says. “Unleash this world-changing potential by discipling them as contributors, rather than consumers. This is a key ingredient in starting, strengthening and sustaining every NextGen ministry. This workshop explores practical ways to empower students 

Christian Johnson

Christian Johnson, a “Purpose-Filled” personal development life coach, will offer creative ideas for “Leveling Up Your Leadership with the I.T. Factor,” a reference to the “Inner Tugging” that helps leaders reveal their inner power and navigate challenges fearlessly. The husband and father of three sons cohosts a podcast for emerging leaders with his wife and partner Lyneesha. An Elder at Trinity United Bible Church in Coatesville, PA, he also directs operations at Life Transforming Ministries there and is an entrepreneur, musician and author.

Scott Smith, of Ripe Creatives

And Ripe Creatives, the dynamic collective of young, diverse, contemporary Christian musicians and spoken word artists will lead worship. Ripe has performed at IGNITE and at Carson-Simpson Farm’s summer camps and Worship Fest events for several years, and in numerous church and community venues.

Register now (https://www.ignitenj.org/), and look for more information coming soon about speakers, workshops and other activities planned for the two Youth Leader Day events.