5 Reason I am Excited for SYMC 2011

On Friday I head to The Simply Youth Ministry Conference with a group of my friends, (and some of the most incredible volunteer youth workers I could ask for). I am super excited for this conference and it has come at a crucial time for me. Recently I took an emergency trip back to the U.K to support my family there. I returned tired, drained, and emotionally spent. This conference could not come at a more valuable time.

Here are 5 good reasons I am excited for this conference:

1) SYMC is AUTHENTIC: I have been to this conference over the last few years and I always find the people, atmosphere, and speakers to be so real and authentic. At some conferences you can get the idea that certain people have “arrived” as youth ministry “rock stars”.  At this conference, the speakers actually sign an agreement that requires them to be “on the floor” with everyone. No green room, no hiding, no “them and us”. It’s about speakers meeting with “in the trenches” youth workers like you and me…

2) SYMC is JESUS CENTERED: You would hope that would be the case (and it is)! For me, what makes the difference for this conference are the worship times. Rick Lawrence and his team do an incredible job of helping create some wonderful times to reflect, refuel, and focus on Jesus.

3) SYMC is IN DEPTH: SYMC has been intentional about creating environments where youth workers can have greater discussion, greater access to the speakers, and greater focus on specific areas of ministry. This is perhaps best displayed in the tracks and half-tracks they offer. The tracks are two day / 8 hour workshops focused on one area of ministry. While that might seem too much for some people, I prefer this over a smorgasbord of workshops that give me a great deal of information and ideas, yet leave me walking away with very little concrete application… With that said, they also many great stand alone workshops to choose from that have a discussional atmosphere and invite questions that truly apply to our contexts. It’s more of a conversation than a presentation… This, I believe, creates greater depth…

4) SYMC is ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS: From the hundreds of sack chairs all over the place to the seminars being set up with tables for discussion, the whole conference points towards connection and relationships. Again, the speakers are available to talk to and every youth worker can be a part of a “connect group” that focuses in on their stage of ministry, or a particular area they wish to work through. From the previous few years at this conference, I have many good friends in ministry who know me well and connect with me continuously throughout the year. It’s about ongoing relationships…

5) SYMC is INNOVATIVE: The people behind this conference are not content to continue with the norm of what has gone before. The conference in many ways stands for the shift that we are all seeing in youth ministry. As SYMC has developed over the years it has led the shifts and patterns of youth ministry and has led the way in tackling the newest and best ways to reach the next generation of students…

Finally, the conference is sold-out… Enough said!

Phil <><

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2 Responses to 5 Reason I am Excited for SYMC 2011

  1. Mr Bill March 2, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

    Phil –
    You should get boooko points from the SYM family for this one!

  2. JB March 2, 2011 at 7:31 pm #

    Jodi and I are so bummed to be missing the conference this year. I hope you have a great time!

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