Your investment in the Center for Youth Ministry Training continues to pay huge dividends and we are grateful for your support. Recently, I was presenting the CYMT partner church program to a church in West Tennessee. As folks were arriving, one gentleman sat down and read our tagline on the screen: “Because good youth ministry doesn’t just happen. That’s for sure!”
I couldn’t agree with him more. CYMT celebrates our seventh anniversary in March and we are currently finalizing our eighth class of graduate residents for this fall. We are privileged to help churches and youth ministers do the hard work of building effective youth ministries. But it is hard work. Guiding, training, teaching, and walking with young youth ministers in their first three years is rewarding and challenging. Helping churches get organized, focused, and equipped to support a youth ministry is essential for building sustainable youth ministries; but it is hard work and it certainly “doesn’t just happen.”
One of our first year graduate residents had the privilege of praying with one of her youth as he made the commitment to follow Christ. I am grateful for each one of your investments that makes moments like this possible, because the end goal of CYMT’s mission and ministry to and with youth ministers and churches is to reach youth with the Good News of Jesus Christ.
CYMT will launch a Foundation Campaign this month with a goal of raising $5 million by September 1 to endow a youth ministry professorship, rural and urban partner church grants, and to create spiritual venture capital to expand our ministry. We will be sending you more information about this campaign in the coming weeks.
Finally, I would ask that you keep the staff, residents, and partner churches of the CYMT program in your prayers!
Dietrich “Deech” Kirk
CYMT is proud to announce the expansion of our original initiative into Theology Together 2.0. CYMT aims to develop a curriculum to be used in local congregations and ministries. Taking what we have learned about engaging youth in deep theological reflection during missional experiences and embedding those processes into congregational youth ministries.
"I hope students come away from my courses with the ability to think more deeply, richly and theologically about their youth ministry practice. I think a lot of what happens in youth ministry happens unreflectively and can be deforming to young people, and my courses are intended to give students a theological framework for evaluating and reforming their youth ministry practice."
Of course, I want students to drink deeply from the academic readings, lectures and discussions, and I want them to be informed by the academics. But more than that, I want them to see that youth ministry is a calling of God, an important part of God’s mission in the world, one that should give them pride and evoke humility at the same time.