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'Toward the Promise' Convention Empowers Youth Ministry Leaders

Over 200 leaders in children's, youth, and young adult ministries convened at the Mt. Aetna Retreat Center in Hagerstown, Md., from Sept. 8-10 for Chesapeake Conference's annual Children's and Youth Leaders Convention.

This year's theme, "Toward the Promise," was brought to life through various presentations by keynote speaker Brian Litzenberger. Litzenberger serves as the pastor of the Federalsburg, Seaford, and Open Arms churches located on the Eastern Shore.

The primary focus of the weekend was a series of breakout seminars designed to help ministry leaders refine their skills in specialized areas. The convention featured 34 presentations organized into seven certification tracks, which included Adventurers, Pathfinders, and Young Adults. Two of these tracks were offered in Spanish.

Kenia Reyes, Youth and Young Adult Ministries director for Chesapeake Conference, celebrated the event's success. "Our leadership convention was one for the books!" she said, highlighting both the robust attendance and the enthusiasm among participants. Reyes also noted that over 80 Pathfinder leaders expressed interest in participating in the conference's new Master Guide curriculum and program.

"I am looking forward to seeing how many new leaders we can prepare as they go back to their churches to disciple more children for Jesus," said Reyes.

Shawn Paris, director for Camp Ministries and Missions, praised the caliber of the seminars, most of which were led by lay leaders actively involved in children's, youth, and young adult ministries within Chesapeake Conference churches. Paris remarked that it was rewarding to hear from leaders with hands-on experience who could share practical insights for effective ministry at the local church level.


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