Connection Breakout Sessions

There are a number of breakout sessions for you to participate in…check them out!

Friday, January 28 1-4 PM

Youth Ministry 3.0
Youth culture has shifted, but many youth ministries have not, leaving us with approaches, values, and assumptions that are perfect…for 1987 youth ministries! We’ll talk about how we got here, and what we should consider changing. This won’t be a “five easy steps” seminar; instead we’ll examine principles, make suggestions, and work collaboratively to dream about contextual application in our own unique settings. Mark Oestreicher speaks, writes, consults with churches and ministries, and runs the Youth Ministry Coaching Program.

Saturday, January 29 2-3:30 PM

  1. Transitions In Youth Ministry – A trend that we have all lived with over the years in youth ministry is transition. Every youth worker goes through transition in his or her career at some point. Transitioning from one ministry to another can be very challenging. In this seminar, we will discuss practical steps for embracing a new call, leaving your previous position well, and navigating a healthy and effective beginning at your new ministry site. You don’t have to currently be in transition to be a part of this conversation. We would also welcome those of you who have been through transition and could add the discussion with thoughts and insights concerning the joys and challenges from your experience. Tim Ciccone is the author of In Transit: A Youth Workers Guide to Navigating a New Beginning.
  2. Using Small Groups in your Ministry –This breakout session will give you what you need to have a successful (and spiritually impactful) small group ministry. You’ll learn how to maximize your leadership style, how to work with different personalities within your group, and how to lead discussions that reach past the lesson and into kids’ lives. Laurie Polich-Short is a popular speaker and author who currently serves as pastor of small groups and discipleship at Ocean Hills Covenant Church in Santa Barbara, California.
  3. 12 Reasons Why Youth Ministry is Harder Than It Needs To Be –Explore twelve reasons why youth ministry is harder than it needs to be and what you can do to see these obstacles overcome. Chris Folmsbee is manager of Barefoot Ministries.
  4. Beyond Doing No Harm: How to Do Short-Term Missions that Really Help Your Mission Partners in the Field – We all know the life changing benefits short-term mission trips bring to us and our kids. But they can come at a price: “ministry” and “work projects” that are of little benefit to those we seek to serve. It can get to the point where our goal can become “do no harm”. Can we do better than that? Noel Becchetti says, “yes!” This practical workshop will help you discover how to make the attitude adjustments, take a discerning “temperature” of your group’s capabilities, and find the win-win matches in the field that will enable both you and your mission partners enjoy a mutually empowering, life changing, and God honoring short-term experience. Noel Becchetti is a thirty-year short-term mission veteran. He is the current executive director of Truthseekers and was previously the president of Center for Student Missions (CSM), for thirteen years.

Sunday, January 30 2-4 PM

Vision to Reality: Strategic Planning Made Simple
You have a vision for ministry. How do you get it beyond the dream-stage? Explore the essentials of strategic planning for youth ministry, including developing a mission and values, analyzing the culture, and how to present the plan to others.
Ginny Olson is currently the co-director of the Center for Youth Ministry Studies and assistant professor of youth ministry at North Park University and Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois. She is the author of Teenage Girls, coauthor of Youth Ministry Management Tools, as well as an editor and contributing author for Breaking the Gender Barrier in Youth Ministry.

What is On Your Heart?
In this town hall style meeting, youth workers can “tweet” in their questions, concerns, and topics they would like to discuss. To participate, include the hashtag #ywb.

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