Friday, 15 February 2019

Discipling the Next Generations

A national conversation about young people and the Uniting Church took place in Melbourne this week.

UCA President Dr Deidre Palmer joined with people from every synod engaged in ministry with youth and young adults, as well as members of the Assembly Resourcing Unit, the Discipling the Next Generations Circle of Interest and presbytery representatives.

“I am inspired and full of hope after two days with a team of Uniting Church leaders who are passionate about discipling youth and young adults,” said Dr Palmer.

“I give thanks for the many ways young people are growing in faith and passionately living the Gospel of Christ.”

Assembly Associate General Secretary Rob Floyd said the group was passionate, energetic and committed to continuing the important work of empowering and equipping youth and young adults in the Uniting Church.

“We began a conversation about our hopes for working together and there was a recognition that we must share and support each other in this important work,” he said

“In particular, we committed to develop targeted training opportunities with some of these to be delivered online.”

The group evaluated the recent National Young Adult Leaders Conference (NYALC) that was held in January and discussed future national youth and young adult gatherings.

“There was interest in opportunities to draw together young people from across our church. One such area might be bringing together young people from across our culturally and linguistically diverse communities to share in their experience of church and offering of leadership,” said Mr Floyd.

National Consultant Rev. Lindsay Cullen said an insight that emerged from the conversation was the multiple pathways to discipleship and leadership for young people in the Uniting Church.

“Some grow out of local communities, some come from finding people in a broader sphere who share beliefs and values and others stem from finding purposes or causes that give meaning to life.”

“It is important that we affirm and nurture all of the ways young people are called to be disciples and live out their faith.”

Participant Nicole Mugford, a member of the Discipling Next Generations Panel commented: “I love being part of the UCA. I feel grateful to have been a part this conversation on discipling young people in our Church and look forward to more collaboration in the future.”