Believe #1

I rarely accept invitations to speak to junior highers at camps, retreats, etc. but decided to bend that rule a bit this Fall. This weekend, (Fri-Sat) I'm speaking at my first of three Jr. High Believe events. Jr. High Believe is a 'junior high only' tour that heads into about a dozen cities. I attended a Believe event a few years ago and was really impressed with their commitment to trying to put on an event geard specifically to young teens.

At the time, they had bigger name speakers...people who do big stage stuff for a living. However, the speakers weren't necessarily junior high friendly. Since then, they've made the decision to invite more speakers who speak to junior highers on a regular basis. That's where I came in. Other cities will have Jason Raitz and Scott Rubin (both from the junior high ministry at Willow Creek). This switch combined with the fact that I really like the Believe director, Johny Scott, made it feel like a fit for me.

It will be interesting to hear how the Believe team feels about the trade-off. Junior high pastors who aren't professional speakers Vs. Professional speakers who aren't junior high pastors.


lilkup said...

we're going to the Believe in St. Louis. Not one of the three you are speaking at, but I'm excited about going again this year.

Phillip McCart said...

Interesting idea. Why do you think there is a differnce between pro speakers and JH Pastors? Why aren't churches latching hold of the talent under their noses? BTW, thanks for the comment. I had no idea you were reading my blog.

Nathan Cookston said...

Hey Kurt,

I just wanted to thank you for taking the leap and working with the Believe crew. This was my first year attending (Portland) and as a JH youth pastor I have struggled to find something of quality geared specifically towards my JHers. I was greatly impressed by the thought and detail of the conference. You can always find the big rah-rah stuff but not necessarily events intentionally faith-focused. I appreciated the simplicity of communication and content with great room to jump from that to serious discussions of depth regarding the content. Thanks again for being apart of that process.