Teams from the 30 churches selected to comprise the initial Growing Young cohort participated in their first in-person summit on Friday and Saturday, October 11-12, 2019 at St. Mark’s United Methodist Church in Sacramento. The cohort, a partnership between Fuller Youth Institute and the California-Nevada Conference Offices of Congregational Development and Young People’s Ministry, engages the teams in a yearlong process of discernment and designing and deploying ways to create a more vital community involving youth and young adults, including young families.
Fuller Youth Institute (FYI) conducted groundbreaking research with more than 250 congregations that are bucking the “aging, shrinking” trend by developing cultures that welcome, empower, and engage teenagers and young adults. Based on the study, Fuller trains teams in six essential strategies any church can use to better involve and retain young people. Findings show that as these innovative churches engage younger generations, it breathes life and vitality into the whole church.
Each team, made up of four people from the church (including the pastor), is engaging in regular online webinars and receiving one year of personalized coaching, in addition to participating in two in-person summits – the second of which will take place March 13-14, 2020.
Participating churches were selected by Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño and the Appointive Cabinet from among applicants, and announced during Annual Conference Session in June.