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Festivals for Young Preachers are springing up all over the country this summer, and they are hosted by national denominational gatherings.
The first is the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. At their General Assembly in Dallas (June17-20), 16 Young Preachers are registered to preach on the year-long AoP theme, HEAVEN & EARTH. This tradition started 4 years ago with only 4 Young Preachers.
The second is the North American Christian Convention. They will gather in Cincinnati (June 22-25) and witness the final stage of an innovative Next Generation Preacher Search. Managed from Peperdine University, this competition induced scores of Young Preachers to submit sermon videos last fall; some were invited to one of two national events, and from these 4 were selected to preach on Wednesday morning June 24.
The Mission Summit of American Baptist Churches USA gathers in Kansas City (June 25-29). Central Baptist Theological Seminary has coordinated their first Festival of Young Preachers and more than 20 are expected to stand and deliver a message from the 20 biblical texts associated with the HEAVEN & EARTH theme.
Finally, more than 100 Young Preachers are expected at the Young Preachers Festival and Conference also in Kansas City (July 16-18). This event, hosted by Church of the Resurrection and directed by AoP Gospel Catalyst Tyler Best AoP’11), builds off of the momentum of festivals at University of Evansville, Pfrimmers Chapel UMM, and the Indiana Conference of the United Methodist Church. (Note especially the video of Tyler on this INUMC website.)
This attention to Young Preachers has, in large measure, grown out of the mission and programs of the Academy of Preachers. Our mission is to “identify, network, support, and inspire young people in the call to gospel preaching.” Augmenting attention given to other avenues of ministry (social justice, worship, youth ministry, etc), the AoP has brought fresh focus to the role of preaching, both parish preaching and public preaching.
We have given our energy to regional and national festivals but the real opportunity lies with these denominational networks. Every regional and national meeting of a denomination needs to include a Festival for Young Preachers. Such an initiative will bring younger leaders into what is generally a gray gathering; and the preaching of this millennial generation will become a wellspring of hope within denominational structures that are struggling to remain solvent, relevant, and vital.
The Academy of Preachers is ready to help any association, conference, synod, or assembly empower their Young Preachers through a Festival. We have a FESTIVAL IN A BOX that is designed and available for this very purpose. We even have professional staff and trained Young Preachers (we call them Gospel Catalysts) ready to assist in any such effort.
Throughout this summer, AoP team members Dwight A. Moody and Wyndee Holbrook will be attending, leading, recording, and reporting on these Festivals highlighted above. Tap us on the shoulder and ask how we can help you.
Have you heard about AoP membership? This is different than having preached at a Festival. If you have preached at a National Festival you will always carry the status of the year you were inducted into the AoP, but membership will now allow you to show your on-going commitment to the mission.
Membership is a new means for helping to sustain the AoP’s ministry to identify, network and support Young Preachers. In fact, starting with the current preaching theme, Heaven and Earth, being a dues paying member is required to preach at a Festival of Young Preachers. If you join now you’ll receive the pictured AoP Lapel Pin in the mail as a welcome gift. If you wait to join as part of Festival registration, you’ll receive your pin at the Festival.
There are 3 levels of annual membership:
Young Preacher – $25
Ministry Professional – $120
iPartner (institutions) – $500
The Academy of Preachers has named Wyndee Holbrook as Executive Director of the Academy of Preachers, Inc. (AoP)
The AoP is a national organization located in Lexington, Kentucky with a mission to identify, network, support, and inspire young people in the call to gospel preaching.
Rev. Holbrook has work on the AoP team since 2011, first as contractor, then as Director of Programs. She is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
“Wyndee is a bright, talented, and winsome administrator and leader,” said AoP President Dwight A. Moody when announcing the promotion at the annual meeting of the Board of Directors in July. “She is beloved by all, especially by the Young Preachers all over this country who adore and respect her.”
Upon hearing the news, Brite Divinity School in Ft. Worth, Texas, tweeted: “Brite Divinity School congratulates the awesome, wonderful, and amazing Wyndee Holbrook on being named Executive Director of @YoungPreachers.”
In her new capacity, Holbrook will administer the office and AoP finances and oversee events and programs. President Moody will continue to lead the AoP to fulfill its vision by focusing of Board recruitment and development, advancement and fund-raising, and launching the new AoP initiative, the Center for American Preaching, a scholarly center asserting and researching the social significance of preaching.