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Answering the Call to Befriend: Create Belonging in an Age of Judgement, Isolation and Fear (YM, PT)
Speaker: Scott Sauls
At a time when our country is increasingly polarized and antagonistic, this workshop will help parents and youth ministers explore why and how we engage in true and meaningful friendship with people who are damaged, difficult, or simply different. We will explore Biblical texts that teach us to “love across the lines of our differences,” to go beyond the superficial and transactional acquaintances that so often pass for friendship, and to embrace others with love that is sacrificial and life-giving. Parents and ministers will explore how to enrich their own friendships and to encourage teens to do the same.

A Different Metric for Maturity? (YM)
Speaker: Daniel Im
How do you judge the effectiveness of your ministry? By its size? Number of activities? Quantity of groups? How ethnically diverse it is? In this session, we’ll outline a different metric for maturity from one of the largest research studies on discipleship done to date. You will leave with an implementable plan to move your church towards growth and maturity.

Anxiety and Academic Pressure in Affluent Suburban and Asian American Contexts: Gospel Contextualization (YM, AA)
Speakers: Cameron Cole and Clark Fobes
Young people in both affluent suburban and Asian-American settings experience intense stress and academic pressure. This workshop will examine this issue on the surface level. Clark Fobes and Cameron Cole, who work in these contexts respectively, will then deconstruct the cultural dynamics and idols that drive the stress and anxiety in these different settings. They will each discuss how they communicate the gospel in different ways in these unique settings based on understand the culture at a deeper level. This workshop will offer tools on cultural analysis and faithful gospel contextualization, and help us grow in cultural awareness as we see how the gospel addresses all races and cultures.

Creating Incredible Intergenerational Relationships in your Church
Speaker: Tony Souder (YM, PT)

No church is immune to intergenerational disconnectedness. Not all experience it as deeply as others and yet the long-term losses for the next generation are incalculable. Research shows that children and youth tend to thrive when they have multiple adult believers investing in their lives. In this seminar we will explore effective ways for creating the intergenerational relationships necessary for the Next Generation in your church to flourish in faith and life for the long-term.

Creating Space: Building a Gospel-Centered Culture for Your Students (YM)
Speaker: Rebecca Heck
Depending on your weekly schedule, you’re lucky if you have two or three hours (tops) with the bulk of your students in one room.  A good culture is more than a cool room, couches, and a coffee maker. So, how do we create a space that invites students into the life-changing power of the gospel? Whether you never know what room your ministry is meeting in or you have a whole wing of the building dedicated to student ministry, we’ll spend time in this workshop talking about how to build a gospel-centered culture you and your students can grow and thrive in.

Creative Approaches to Engaging Teaching in Small Groups (YM)
Speakers: Sarah Seibels and Mary Beth Cunningham
Too often small groups boil down to the same format of “teacher talk, kid listen.” Different learners need to be engaged in different ways. Teens respond to fresh and diverse teaching methods. In this workshop, veteran youth pastor and school teacher Sarah Seibels and youth pastor Mary Beth Cunningham will talk about different types of learners and offer a diversity of methods and approaches for effective instruction and keeping small group fresh and exciting.

Excellence in Preaching the Word (YM)
Speakers: Dr. Robert Smith
In this workshop, preaching expert, Dr. Robert Smith, will deconstruct his plenary sermon from the morning session of Rooted and explain how he formed his sermon. He will use this as a jumping off point to offer basic principles for effective biblical preaching.

God’s Beautiful Design for Gender (YM)
Speaker: Dr. Jim Coffield
The modern conception of gender has become fluid and blurry. Most youth pastors are encountering students with gender confusion and with questions about transitioning. This workshop will first talk about the theological significance of gender in understanding the triune God and one another. It will then offer information about the nature of gender dysphoria and the psychology behind people who experience gender confusion. It will offer practical approaches to minister to kids who struggle in this way.

Joy and Lament in Psalms (YM, PT)
Speaker: Joe Gibbes
This workshop will provide encouragement and balm to the discouraged and brokenhearted parent and youth pastor. This talk with focus on the study of various Psalms, with attention to the wide variety of emotion the Psalms acknowledge. This talk will aim to provide perspective, hope, and the space to breath, by speaking to the future redemption of present suffering, and to the eternal hope we have in the Cross and Empty Tomb of Jesus Christ.

Law, Gospel, and the Wisdom to Know the Difference (YM, PT)
Speaker: Joe Gibbes
One of the most helpful and empowering theological paradigms for ministry and parenting is that of “Law” and “Gospel.” This talk will look at the theological definition and differences between “Law” and “Gospel.” Drawing from Reformation sources and Scripture this workshop will help parents and youth pastors make application in the contexts and the lives of teenagers.

Living Redemptively With Your Teen (PT)
Speakers: Kristen Hatton and Rebecca Hatton 
The teen years are filled with temptations, trials and a rollercoaster of emotions. For both the teen and parents. Navigating through that together can be tricky. How can we create a family atmosphere of honest conversation, confession, forgiveness and grace? Is it possible to get along in the midst of sin and struggles? To move toward one another and not always be at one another? What does living redemptively even mean, and what should it look like? Join mother/daughter duo for a candid conversation on how they got through it, and survived!

Navigating the Emotional World of Teens (PT, YM)
Speaker: David Thomas
According to the statistics, we are the most addicted, in-debt, depressed, obese population in U.S. history.  We go to great lengths to avoid, deny, medicate or suppress emotions.  This country is full of adults who never learned how to navigate their emotions in a constructive way.  What would it look like to raise a generation of emotionally and spiritually healthy teens?

This workshop will focus on understanding the emotional development of teens.  We’ll identify three important emotional milestones for teens to hit as they develop, and the ingredients for helping them reach them.  Parents and educators will be introduced to practical ideas for furthering a teen’s emotional development.

Preaching and Teaching that Connects to Peoples’ Hearts (YM)
Speaker: Scotty Smith
Powerful preaching and teaching that moves people connects with them both at the head and heart. We all want our expressions of the gospel and God’s word to connect with students at an emotional level, but how do we do that in a way that is authentic and genuine? In this workshop, Scotty Smith will offer practical tools and approaches on how we connect with the total person in our communication of God’s truth.

Rites of Passage for Lifelong Faith: Establishing Milestones for Students (YM)
Speaker: Chelsea Erickson
Research indicates high school graduates are leaving church at alarming rates nationwide, and many families and churches have taken up the cause of intergenerational integration in response. This worthy goal of helping students find their place in the body of Christ is often easier said than done. Meanwhile, social scientists tell us that students are growing up more slowly, making their official foray into adulthood increasingly less clear. We need to recover meaningful rites of passage in the local church if we are to truly integrate students into the family of God. By thoughtfully aligning spiritual milestones with seasons of developmental growth, families and churches can also celebrate students’ growth in the gospel at critical moments of transition. Whether you are a youth pastor looking for a way to create rites of passage in your church or a parent hoping to establish a coming-of-age tradition for your own children, this workshop will provide suggested steps along the path to richer integration in the life of the church.

Teaching Teen About Biblical Sexuality (YM, PT)
Speaker: Walt Mueller
In today’s youth culture, where do teens turn as a foundation for their beliefs and behaviors regarding sexuality and gender? Most unconsciously turn to the cultural narrative, which encourages a ‘do as you will’ sexual ethic. And increasingly, those who endeavor to follow a biblical sexual ethic do so by assimilating a belief system built on faulty hermeneutical and exegetical methods, leading to practices that reflect the world more than the Word. In this seminar, Walt will share a simple redemptive approach to teaching sexuality that he’s seen engage students in ways that get them thinking not only about biblical sexuality in new ways, but about biblical foundations for all nooks and crannies of life.

The Art of Meaningful, Heart-Level Conversations (YM, PT)
Speaker: Dr. Jim Coffield
Parents and youth leaders all want to connect with kids at a deeper level, but we often struggle to get below the surface. This workshop will offer a framework for meaningful, pastoral conversations with teenagers.

The Formative Power Of Worship Songs And Why It Matters (YM)
Speaker: Kevin Twit
Typically we think of singing in worship as a time merely for expressing our hearts. But what if the songs we sing are shaping our understanding of the Christian life? If this is true, how might it effect the kinds of songs we sing?

The Necessity of History in Discipleship (YM)
Speaker: Jason Cook
Faithful exegesis is an essential part of Christian discipleship. In order to faithfully teach God’s word, the scriptures must be studied and interpreted in the context where they stand. And for our people, understanding context drives how we understand the text. History is the context of our culture. Without understanding history, we cannot properly exegete culture. This breakout will look at key themes throughout history that will aid us in discipleship of students and how they engage the culture around them.

The Necessity of Prayer (YM, PT)
Speaker: Dave Choi
Tim Keller, in a recent gathering of planters, shared that there was a moment in his ministry when he realized that prayer was a necessity. He said when something is a necessity, you will find time for it. Let’s be honest. For many of us, prayer is something we do in public, but lack in private. We may lead prayer meetings, but our own house is far from being a house of prayer. By studying Luke 11:1-13, we will explore what the disciples learned when they asked Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray.”

Tools for Contextualization (YM)
Speaker: Bijan Mirtolooi
One of the great challenges for ministers today is being faithful to the gospel while at the same time communicating that gospel in ways that are relevant and understandable to your hearers. This is the challenge of contextualization: presenting the biblical gospel to people in language they understand and through appeals and arguments that land with them in force. After briefly exploring what contextualization is (and is not!) and why it matters, this workshop will present practical guidance for how to contextualize biblical truth for your ministry context.

Tough Kids 101 (YM, PT)
Speaker- Liz Edrington
Have you ever had “that kid” who you just can’t seem to get through to, who you just don’t understand?  What do we do with those kids who constantly disrupt youth group by making themselves the center of attention or kids who never seem to “make the right choice”?  In this workshop, we’ll consider some of the potential underlying factors of our tough kids in youth ministry and explore some of the potential options for loving and serving these kids (and their families) well.

Union with Christ: What It Is, and Why It Matters for Youth Ministry (YM)
Speaker: Bijan Mirtolooi
One of the most important doctrines of the New Testament is also one of the most overlooked: union with Christ. Far from being an abstract set of ideas, union with Christ is the foundation for living a vibrant Christian life with hope, purpose, and a stable identity. After defining what union with Christ is, this workshop will explore the practical ways union with Christ is storehouse of rich resources for youth ministry today.

Unplugging the False God of Technology (YM)
Speakers: Kevin Yi and Mike McGarry
As youth workers, we’re all aware that technology has fundamentally changed the lives of our youth. The latest studies all point to alarming trends in rising depression, anxiety, and addiction to our devices. How can youth workers help students understand technology not as their savior, but as a tool to be stewarded? Rather than despairing at the generation shifts that are occurring, what unique gospel opportunities does the technological revolution present to us?

Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys (YM, PT)
Speaker: David Thomas
This workshops will help parents, ministers and volunteers understand and explore the hearts, minds and ways of boys and the vital role we play along his journey to manhood. We will look at the different stages of his development and define what he needs from us in each of those stages. This workshop is packed full of practical suggestions for how to parent, teach and discipline more in tandem with the way he is designed rather than in opposition to it. Come enjoy some fresh insight and much-needed encouragement on the road to raising boys, from birth through adolescence.

What Grieving People Wish You Knew about What Really Helps and What Really Hurts (YM, PT)
Speaker: Nancy Guthrie
When someone we know is grieving, we want to help. But sometimes we stay away or stay silent, afraid that we will do or say the wrong thing, that we will hurt instead of help. In this workshop, Nancy Guthrie provides us with the insight we need to confidently interact with grieving people. Drawing upon the input of hundreds of grieving people, as well as her own experience of grief, Nancy offers specifics on what to say and what not to say, and what to do and what to avoid.

What Were You Thinking??!!! Getting to the Root of Your Child’s Behavior
Speaker: Julie Sparkman (PT)
The loudest and most powerful voice your child will hear today is the one in their own head. We are often unaware of our true thoughts, yet thoughts are the drivers of all emotion and behavior. In this workshop, parents will learn a very simple method to discover and replace those “old thought tapes” with ones based on the truth of the gospel … which sets whole families free to true and lasting change.

When A Good Desire Becomes a False God
Speaker: Julie Sparkman (PT)
Each of us longs for our children to have a passion for Christ, healthy relationships, and success at school. All of these things are good and healthy desires, but when parents lose sight of the gospel, these good things become idols. In the workshop we will explore how the gospel leads us to repentance and rest, setting us free to love our children with healed hearts.

Youth Culture Flyover:  Megatrends Every Youth Worker Must Know and Address (YM)
Speaker: Walt Mueller
What are the cultural forces shaping the values, attitudes, and behaviors of students living in today’s world? In this practical and hope-filled seminar, veteran youth-culture analyst Walt Mueller will overview and critique several of the most powerful cultural realities. Walt will also detail strategies for guiding students through these forces in a manner that will allow you to help your students realize their created purpose and live life to the glory of God.

Youth Ministry in Missions: Equipping our Youth to Engage the World
Speaker: Clark Fobes (YM)
Short term missions are often central pieces in a Youth Ministry calendar, and our students often point to them as milestones in their faith journeys. But are we just doing them because it’s the thing to do? Too often short-term mission trips become more about the experience than the actual mission. How can we engage our kids in missions in a way that is meaningful – both to the students and the host country – and not just for the experience of the trip? Is a meaningful mission trip even possible with minors? In this workshop, we will discuss a biblical theology of missions and how it informs how we engage in missions in Youth Ministry – both locally and globally. When done correctly, Youth Ministries can be one of the most vital tools in accomplishing the Church’s mission of making disciples in our midst and amongst the unreached.

YM: Youth Ministry Track; PT: Parent Track; AA: Asian American Track


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