Celebrating Milestones

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Younger Generation Church [YG], the young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church in Texas is celebrating an important milestone this year.

Having launched their young adult ministry in 2004, they will be celebrating their 10th Anniversary with a black-tie affair. The special evening is slated for August 2, 2014 and will entail an abundance of gratitude, great food and great company.

Honored guests include Ritchie & Sheila Pruehs, Mike & Gayle Tucker, Brooks & Jaclyn Pruehs, and Shastin Rains.

Younger Generation Church [YG] is the vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church. Our mission is to deepen our devotion to Jesus Christ by pursuing intimacy with GOD, experiencing community with each other, and inspiring those around us with the hope of grace.

 

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Updates

Be on the lookout for new updates and changes coming soon to Ignitionblog. We have some catching up to do!

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Young Adult Ministry: LOST to LIFE

SDA infographic v4“I’m enthusiastic about Young Adult Ministry. . . So now what?

The 2013 NAD Year End Meeting presentation on Young Adult LIFE was a home run, having many Adventist leaders and administrators excited about young adult ministry. So what’s next to get the tide turned, returning next generations to our faith communities?

I believe this will require us to move from the research to practical step-by-step actions that each of our local churches and the various tiers of church organization can implement. To that end, I wanted to offer you a preview of a young adult ministry praxis model I’m calling: From LOST to LIFE.

Developed from nearly 30 years of research and ministry, I wanted to share a concise construct for your consideration and critique:

From LOST to LIFE – A Step-by-Step Young Adult Ministry Model

Offered here is a praxis model in response to the telling findings of David Kinnaman’s You Lost Me and the Barna Group’s Seventh-day Adventist Millennials Research:

LISTEN & LEARN
· Learn how your church is doing with next generations [pre-assessment].
· Listen to the context of your young people and discover authentic ways to Biblically engage them [resourcing & training].

INITIATE & INTERGENERATE
· Initiate conversations with next generations about their journey [empathy].
· Intergenerate inclusive ministry opportunities that empower their skill sets [apprenticeship].

FORM & FOSTER
· Form environments intentionally focused on building faith in next generations [discipleship].
· Foster authentic intergenerational relationships [mentoring].

EVALUATE & ENHANCE
· Evaluate how your church is doing with next generations [post-assessment].
· Enhance and refine your next generation ministry strategy [best practice].

So how can I get started?
Start with the “L” in the model: LISTENING & LEARNING.
Here are two resources to get you started towards young adult LIFE:

1. YOU LOST ME LIVE-NEXT STEPS VIDEO
This free video and talksheet were designed to help you better understand the context of today’s young adults. Even if you haven’t read “You Lost Me,” by David Kinnaman, it will help you and your team begin the listening process.

Download the video FREE at https://vimeo.com/65252194 Download the companion talksheet FREE at http://db.tt/b8d6Ss9C

2. INTRODUCING BARNA LABS*
At Younger Generation Church [www.YGchurch.com], we are thrilled to have enrolled in Barna Labs, a full-year learning experience, with diagnostic surveys and practical training from David Kinnaman and the Barna team. This is a limited experience for a select group, so get full information now at www.barna.org/labs *For Seventh-day Adventist churches and ministries wanting to enroll, we’ve arranged for an additional discount to the level you select.

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Local leaders, pastors, churches, conferences, and unions can start with these two resources, beginning to learn about next generations and listen to the heartbeat of the Millennial context. NAD, GC, even non-Adventist leaders and administrators can begin with these steps to move their church from next generations LOST, to next generations experiencing LIFE in Christ Jesus.

So now what?
As Jose Rojas would say, “Just do it!”
Start moving next generations from LOST to LIFE today.

1425272_605497896057_2098941370_oA Allan Martin, PhD, is the teaching pastor of Younger Generation Church [www.YGchurch.com], the vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church in Texas [USA]. Dr. Martin continues as adjunct faculty for the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, specializing in discipleship and family ministry. He and his wife, Deirdre, tour nationally, speaking about relationships as well as equipping new generations in Christian lifestyle and leadership. Along with daughter Alexa, they reside in the DFW Metroplex
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Southwestern Union hosts “Jesus All.” 2013 Young Adult Festival of Worship

JesusAll-Worship

The second annual, union-wide Young Adult Worship Festival hosted record-breaking attendance this past Spring as it convened in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex [DFW]. Themed Jesus All. – the intent was to encourage next generations to put Jesus at the center of their lives.

“Spiritually, it gave me more reasons to sing about what I believe,” shared student Nethania Amanuel. “I want to be a bit more ‘Jesus-inspired’ in my faith.”

The festival launched with speaker Elder Russ Laughlin, Vice President for Spiritual Development, Southwestern Adventist University, and performances by the University Singers under the direction of Jonathan Wall.  Dr. A Allan Martin and Pastor Leah Jordache led worship sessions accompanied by musical duo, The Only Way, performing an original worship song to round out the Sabbath morning worship experiences.

“The messages in each worship were excellent,” lauded DFW young adult Jorge Mardones. “The speakers and artists were on fire for Christ and their passion transferred over to us.”

The afternoon afforded attendees options for spiritual growth seminars with Pastors Jordache and Marland May, as well as a volunteer service opportunity at Mission Arlington, a community agency providing support to families in need.

MissionArlington“Serving the community allows us to develop our character and use our talents—to get out of our comfort zones,” shared collegian David Kuchurivskyy. “It allows us to pursue something that God is driving in us—to be involved and try something new that will help us become better believers.”

The festival culminated with an evening concert by YG Worship and award-winning recording artist, Chris August.  All done with the desire to praise Jesus Christ, the concert engaged and inspired the audience with worship songs and August sharing his personal testimony.

Registered young adults were given a “swag bag” filled with books and resources to share what they learned at the festival and continue the movement to make Jesus the center of it all. With such great worship experiences, service/growth activities, and social opportunities, young adults are already looking forward to next year’s Young Adult Festival of Worship.

“The emphasis on Jesus as everything was very, very important,” reflected Leah Jordache, Southwestern Union coordinator of discipleship and young adult ministry. “So often we get confused about what our religion is about, or even what our lives are supposed to be about. We need to reminded that Jesus is everything, and when we are in Him, we have everything we need. That was the theme for the festival and I think it’s crucial, especially for young adults who are trying to live out their faith.”

OddieOAuthor byline: Oddie Olazaran is studying theology at Southwestern Adventist University and serves as the communication director for Younger Generation Church [www.YGchurch.com], the vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church, Texas, USA

 

JesusAllConcertClick here for more photos of the 2013 Young Adult Festival of Worship [by Frances Otero Photography]
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“Do you love your traditions more than your children?”

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Barna Group President, David Kinnaman posed this poignant question to over 600 registrants attending You Lost Me. Live! this Spring, hosted by Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church in Texas.  The question struck close to home as local congregations are witnessing 59% of their young adults evaporate from church life — the Adventist church not spared.

To aid local faith communities in building redemptive relationships with young adults, Younger Generation Church [www.YGchurch.com], in collaboration with the Southwestern Union Conference and North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists, has produced free downloadable resources that capture the essence of Kinnaman’s presentation, but further, solicits ministry leaders to take relevant next steps.

Download the #ylmLIVE Next Steps video FREE at https://vimeo.com/65252194, and the companion talksheet at http://db.tt/b8d6Ss9C.

Younger Generation Church is the vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church, www.ArlingtonAdventist.com

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That Which Was LOST May Be Found

“You Lost Me.”

A difficult phrase to hear from anyone, but when the demographic research of the Barna Group points to upwards of 60% of young adults saying this about their church experience, it is a sobering sentiment indeed.  The Adventist Church not spared, these statistics are finding a whole generation of young people feeling lost and disconnected from the faith community of their childhood.

DKatYGChallenged by the realities facing the local church, over 600 ministry leaders from across the nation registered for the You Lost Me. Live! Dallas learning experience this past Spring, hosted at the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church in Texas.  Barna Group President, David Kinnaman, author of the book, You Lost Me, facilitated a day’s worth of presentations, conversations and interviews meant to inform and challenge attendees regarding the church experience of young adults ages 18-29, also known as Millennials.

Those who attended You Lost Me. Live!—25% of which were Adventist leaders, pastors, parents, and young adults—came away with a renewed vision for reaching out and retaining the next generation.

YLMLdallas“We all need to tune into the frequency where young adults are broadcasting their needs, hopes, and challenges,” commented Richard Castillo, a communications consultant with the Oklahoma Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. “You Lost Me. Live! helped tune me in clearly, placing me in better touch with ways we can make a difference with young adults, an important segment of God’s kingdom.”

In addition to union and local conference leadership, many pastoral leaders attended the gathering.

Pastor Shiphrah Fepulea’i from Garden Grove, California added, “After one day in Dallas—literally, one day—I am back in SoCal with more courage to be proximal with young adults. . . that’s the courage to be close enough to Millennial culture to influence it.”

Pastor Dan Serns from North Dallas shared that You Lost Me. Live! “offered clean, clear, crisp challenging presentations of the needs to reach the young adult generation.”

“The You Lost Me. Live! presentations spawned creative ideas that could be utilized at our local churches,” observed Sharon Leukert, a pastor’s wife who traveled from East Texas with husband Karl. “I wish this had come along 20 years before. There is hope for the future—as well as the here and now!”

Perhaps the most poignant feedback was shared by the young adults who attended.

You Lost Me. Live! was great,” raved James Castillo, Jr. from Houston, Texas. “I am a Millennial myself, and growing up no one really took the time to teach me how to love Christ. I am now a youth leader at my church, trying my best to show young people how to love like Christ did. You Lost Me. Live! will help my youth spiritually and help them make a stand for Christ with love.”

ylm-web-slideshow-spring2013Produced by the Barna Group, You Lost Me. Live! Dallas was a free event for all the registrants.  Thanks to sponsorship by the North American Division, Southwestern Union, and Texas Conference, Adventist attendees were not only enriched by the free presentations, but were also afforded a post-event reception supper to talk with others about their insights.  Then, each Adventist attendee was given the You Lost Me DVD media curriculum to take home and spark fruitful conversations with their church and young adults about helping the lost come home.

“Despite the grim reality suggested by the statistics,” offered Pastor Lenworth Sealey of Lufkin, Texas, “I left with a very real sense of hope and resources to help facilitate change in my church’s approach for the better.”

Similar You Lost Me. Live! events have been held in Phoenix, AZ, and Orlando, FL, with tour stops still planned for Indianapolis, IN, and Colorado Springs, CO.  To register, or for more information on the remaining You Lost Me. Live! experiences, go to http://www.youlostmelive.com

CostinJordacheAuthor Byline:
Costin Jordache, MA, MBA
is the Assistant to the President for Communication,
Texas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
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JESUS. ALL. THEME OF 2013 YOUNG ADULT FESTIVAL OF WORSHIP

YAFOW2013-bannerCollegians through young professionals are especially invited to the all-day 2013 Young Adult Festival of Worship, Saturday, April 20, beginning at 9:00 AM [CST], at Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church, 4409 Pleasantview Drive, Arlington, TX 76017-1427.  Centered on the theme, Jesus. All. young adults can enjoy worship sessions, community service opportunities, seminars, and a 7:00 PM evening concert featuring awarding-winning recording artist, Chris August.  The entire day is free except the evening concert which is $8/general admission.  For tickets and more information go to www.YGchurch.com

Other featured participants include vocal duo, The Only Way; The University Singers from Southwestern Adventist University; and speakers Leah Jordache and Russ Laughlin.

The festival is open to young adults and their families, kindly sponsored by Southwest Region Youth Ministries, Southwestern Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Texas Conference Youth & Young Adult Ministry, the One project, and Younger Generation Church, the vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church.  For more information on the festival or other upcoming events, go to www.YGchurch.com

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