“Why are all these young people here?” This was a question I got on more than one occasion by those who were working in the offices around our Young People’s Ministries Board Meeting this past week. It had honestly not even occurred to me that there was anything unusual about the gathering, until others began to inquire about it. Then it hit me how wonderfully rare this group of people is in the life of the church. Friends from home were confused as well about the pictures I was posting on Facebook, “I thought you were at a Board Meeting. Where are you?” How excited I was to be able to tell them that these young leaders really were our Board – that the Board of Young People’s Ministries is made up of one youth, one young adult, and one youth/young adult worker elected or chosen from each Jurisdiction and Central Conference. This creates a beautiful reversal of the norm, where young people are the majority not the minority of the Board.
I have not been among such a diverse and bonded group of young people since I was in South Africa for the World Methodist Conference, and it was good for the soul. To see them learning about ministry in one another’s areas and truly coming to have a commitment to one another and the work they would do together over the next quadrennium was a joy. In addition, it was exciting to see them grow in confidence over the week and to step up to take on leadership positions both within the Board and externally as representatives of the Board. Worshipping together we learned new ways of worshipping and created new memories as you can see in the video below:
I look forward to what the next four years holds for these young leaders and youth/young adult workers, as they explore creative ways of working together across borders and languages.