This past weekend 9 members of the Young Preachers Leadership Team, hailing from 8 schools in 4 states, gathered at St. Matthews Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky, to continue planning for the inaugural Festival of Young Preachers. The Festival will be held at the St. Matthews church, January 7-9, 2010.
Among the items discussed and decided by the Leadership Team: the pre-Festival worship services will utilize Taize practices of meditation and music; festival tee shirts will be available in short-sleeve and long-sleeve styles; a $1,000 scholarship will be given to the young preacher who registers the most number of supporters at the festival; the combined gospel choirs of the University of Louisville, Kentucky State University, Northern Kentucky University, the University of Kentucky, and Georgetown College will be invited to sing on Friday night; and a covenant expressing the values and vision of the Academy will be written and read at the installation ceremony during the final assembly on Saturday.
Kara Hildebrandt, recent graduate of Vanderbilt Divinity School, was delegated to draft an application form for the 2010 Young Preachers Leadership Team. All young preachers registered for the festival will be encouraged to apply for the leadership team; two of the current leadership team, plus one member of the board of advisors, plus one academy consultant will constitute a four-person selection team. We are hopeful that the new leadership team will be announced at the festival in January.
And as to the future? The Academy will host three preaching camps in the spring and summer of 2010: one for the leadership team, and two for any young preacher. These open enrollment preaching camps will have space for 24 young preachers each; one will be held in or near Nashville and the other in or near Indianapolis. Applications will soon be available on this web site.
As I write this news update, 86 people have registered for the 2010 festival and as many as 20 other young preachers are completing registration forms. The festival will feature up to 104 young preachers and we will maintain a waiting list.