This past Saturday, the Seminary had a big publicity event. My participation in the event was to help the youth ministry students with our information booth, teach a youth ministry seminar, and organize a skit for one of the worship times. The event was a huge success.
There were more than 300 people at the event (which was our attendance goal), and during the two seminar times, my youth ministry workshop was packed. I spoke about the goal of youth ministry to more than 100 prospective students. We handed out fliers and collected names at our booth. I even ran out of business cards.
There is a great thirst for youth ministry training in Latin America. I believe that we are living in a time where youth ministry training is about to explode both in Mexico and other places in the world. It is humbling and exciting to be a part of what God is doing.
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Today we started a new group in our Youth Ministry diploma program at the Mexican Baptist Theological Seminary. There are 7 new students in the program, bringing our total to 13. Huberto is teaching them “Principles of Youth Ministry,” which is our basic philosophy class.
We’ve decided that one of the best ways to do some training is to make it semi-formal. Basically, these classes are close to the equivalent to a youth ministry conference. They are kind of a mix between a conference and a class, focused on practical concepts and principles that will help youth workers in their local church youth ministries.
Each course is 16 hours long, which we do over 4 weeks. It’s a fun way to train youth workers, and it helps reach out to those who may not yet be able to come to the Seminary full-time.
The diploma program helps us reach our goal of recruiting, networking, training, and supporting youth workers in Latin America.
Check out these other posts about the diploma program:
For a while now, we’ve been thinking about a way to expand the youth ministry training we do in Mexico. We already started one of the only Bachelor’s degrees in youth ministry in Latin America. But we know that it’s not enough to offer a bachelor’s degree in youth ministry.
Although the bachelor’s program has been growing, we recognize that not everyone who is working with young people can come to the Seminary full time for training. With the problems that come from living in Mexico City, it makes it difficult to do a lot of informal training.
Saturday was the first day of the long-awaited Diploma in youth ministry. We started with 6 students who are working in various churches. Each one of them told us how important it is to get training in youth ministry, and they are all very happy to have this informal type of training.
The purpose of the diploma program is obviously to provide practical training for youth workers as well as promote the other youth ministry programs at the Seminary.
We are praying that this Saturday morning course (9 months out of the year) will help many local church youth workers and spread throughout the country.
We’ll keep you up to date with this new program, which we think will grow and expand in the coming months.
I’ve written about the opportunities for youth ministry training in Latin America before, and it seems like more and more people are becoming interested in youth ministry training.
I just got another email from a graduate of ours who recently went to the Dominican Republic, and of course he talked about youth ministry training while he was there. He writes to me, saying, “The people in the Dominican Republic are very interested in taking the experience we had here to their country, and I think it would be a great place to invest in because they have very little ministry to young people. It’s almost zero.”
There are at least 4 countries on the horizon for us in Latin America. We need to know where to go. We need to know what to do. Things in Mexico are picking up. We have a certificate program planned to start in January, and we are working with our Seminary to start a Master’s program as well.
So, where do we go from here? That’s a good question. Please keep praying with us about these things. Pray for wisdom. Pray for resources (both human resources and financial resources).
These are exciting times.
(Photos by: oui c’est moi! on flickr)