“I don’t know what church I will serve in, but I that my heart and my experience and all I’ve done has prepared me for youth ministry.” That statement from Philip, one of the Seniors at the Bucharest Baptist Bible Institute, made me smile as I sat in the chapel with him after my class was over last week.

I had traveled to Bucharest to teach a course called “Professional Orientation to Youth Ministry” and to be with our missionaries there. Part of my new role with YMI is to support our existing programs around the world and assist in the care of our missionaries.

I spent March 4-14 in Romania teaching and spending time with the Rice family who moved to Bucharest less than a year ago. We talked a lot about language learning, adapting to a new culture and the ministry on the field there. I also hung out with their kids and just had fun with their whole family. It was fun to let them show me around and teach me things about their new home.

I spent the second week teaching and getting to know the students who are taking the 9 youth ministry courses. We talked about call to ministry, priorities, leadership principles, balancing family and ministry, and many other topics.

After the class was over, we had a great conversation with Philip, one of the students in class who had shown great interest in working with young people. He has clearly seen God working in his life through the course of the nine classes, and I believe he will play a major part in the future of Youth Ministry International in Europe.

Pray that the ministry in Romania will be fruitful and that many more youth leaders will be trained in the future.