It’s the most wonderful tiiime of the yeeeeaaar!
With the speakers tale-telling and everyone…
Ok, I have no clue what to add next and that doesn’t really work well being typed out. But I totally hear it in my head.
No, I’m not still talking about Christmas. I’m talking about Orange Conference, THAT wonderful time of the year!
(Just so you know, I worked hard on that piece of a rhyme, so I hope you appreciate it.)
Orange Conference 2022 is just around the corner and as with most things Orange, the breakout options are tremendous. So, I figured I’d help you out a bit and share the Student Ministry breakouts that I’m most excited about. By no means is this list exhaustive, but I had to choose just a few.
1. Engaging Teenagers with Special Needs
Supporting children with special needs seems to be something that Children’s Ministries do a lot more than Youth Ministries. Yet, those same children with special needs grow up to be teenagers and either enter the Youth Ministry within their church or they opt out. Sometimes, they opt out because they don’t feel as if there’s a space for them. As youth ministry leaders, we can do a lot more to support students with special needs. I’m really excited about what attending this breakout has the potential to mean for so many teenagers.
2. Digital Discipleship for Students in 2022 and Beyond
After the past two years, do I really need to say why I’m excited about this breakout? The way digital ministry took the world by storm and proved to be such a great way to maintain connections 7 days a week is reason enough. But, many leaders have felt thrust into it and even felt completely ill equipped to navigate in a digital world. I’m not only excited about how this breakout can help expand your digital footprint, but I’m also excited about the possibility of a student’s faith being enhanced because of your digital footprint.
3. What Everyday Leaders Can Do for a Generation in Despair
Maybe you’ve heard, maybe you haven’t…but the US Surgeon General along with several National Agencies (American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the Children’s Hospital Association) have all declared a National Emergency in Child and Adolescent Mental Health. Most faith leaders aren’t licensed therapists and equipped to navigate mental health, but what we can do is offer hope to all of the students who show up weekly. Sometimes we have to be hope for the hopeless. I’m so excited about youth leaders having the opportunity to become better equipped to be catalysts for hope.
4. Reconstructing Faith for a Culture That’s Deconstructing
I’m convinced, this generation of teens is probably the smartest generation of teens ever. Yes, they still do lots of questionable things, but the way they engage the world and their faith seriously gives me so much hope for the future. As a leader, it’s normal to get a little hesitant when students start asking questions. But questions of faith are something we should absolutely embrace. The more we encourage questions, the better we are positioning our students to develop a resilient faith foundation. I’m so excited about this breakout because our students are asking questions and the best thing we can do is equip ourselves to respond better.
5. LGBTQIA+ Conversations
So many of us believe so many different things regarding sexuality. As youth leaders, it isn’t something that we can just ignore. This conversation of sexuality is an open conversation that is actively happening in the lives of the teenagers around us. This breakout is to simply support leaders as they engage the inevitable. I’m excited about this breakout because of all it will teach youth leaders as they prepare to equip volunteers and parents.
And the runner ups…
- Everything else on the list
Alright that’s it. Those are my top 5-ish breakouts that I’m most excited for at Orange Conference 22. What about you? What breakouts are you excited about? If you are like me and can’t choose, don’t worry. You can grab the All-access Audio Pass to get access to every breakout and your favorite moments from mainstage.
See you at OC22!