Led by Ross Shipman, Youth Director
In 2016, the Youth Group experienced a time of transition in its leadership. Former Youth Director, Vanessa Cordova, who served faithfully for a year and a half, stepped down, and I stepped up as a newcomer. Thanks to my Aunt, Lori Glover, for plugging me in here at FPCD. I’ve had some of the best times with these youth ever since. Although I only had half of 2016 to build relationships with them, I believe we’ve made significant progress in growing closer as a unit.
Times of transition can be rough, but most of our kids have stuck it out faithfully. I encourage parents to commit to bring their kids regularly so they don’t miss out! We began a book called Good or God? by John Bevere, then moved on to more topical discussions, such as discipleship, the cost of following Christ, and even the recent elections. Whatever the Lord put on my heart to share with them, I did so without hesitation, and I look forward to greater growth taking place in the year ahead.
Aside from these youth, with the help of Lori Glover and Anna Murphy, and the support of Pastor Ginger and the elders, we have also pioneered a Preteen Impact Group for ages 9-12. These kids have really flourished in this program. I am passionate about this group of kids. They are some of the most humble, vulnerable, and loving kids I have ever known, and I look forward to ministering WITH them every week.
Using examples from Scripture, we have discussed how God calls young people and uses them for mighty purposes. Also our youth have begun helping out in Youth Sunday services with willing hands and gladness in their hearts. This next year, I look forward to seeing how God might continue to use them, not just in ministry to others, but also to me.
I love my new job! It has been such a blessing to serve here at FPCD. Considering the wealth of resources, knowledge, and experience the leadership has here, I could not ask for a better vocation. I am beyond grateful for the experience and growth that I’ve gained by coming here, and I long to pour out more and more as the Lord uses this church and others to pour into me. My vision for 2017 is simple: to double the size of the youth groups through training them in relational evangelism. Nothing is impossible with God, and I believe with His help we can make this happen and do even more. As the youth grow in understanding of who they are in Christ, I believe they will be more than capable of multiplying. We have focused on quality over quantity, but I declare that 2017 will prove that quality comes BEFORE quantity! Please pray for us as we live out the Great Commission in the year ahead!!