JEFFERSONVILLE, IN — Tapping the creative energy of potentially thousands of Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) youth in order to “connect” and “engage” the denomination around mission and ministry is the goal of a new effort of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Foundation.
YMI Live (Youth Mission Initiative LIVE) is a Web-based project launched by the Foundation in November to create an Internet community of Presbyterian youth and adults joined to engage around the mission and goals of the denomination.
“We are really focusing on the theme of connectionalism, and how important unity is,” said Ryan Little, senior vice president and director of marketing for the Foundation. “This is about the church and who or what makes up the church.”
On Feb 1, the site will begin promoting its effort to get PC(USA) youth groups to create and submit a video that articulates Micah 6:8 — “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (NIV)
Under the direction of an adult youth leader, individuals or groups can create 2-to-4-minute video interpretations of the scripture.
“We really want them to use their faith and inspiration,” said Little. “These youth are so talented and so creative.”
“We are hoping to have hundreds, if not thousands, of youth groups participate,” he said.
On March 1, youth groups can officially being posting their videos, which will be voted on by registered visitors to the site.
In May the voting will close, and the 15 videos with the most votes will to be submitted to the 218th General Assembly convening June 20 in San Jose, CA. There, Youth Advisory Delegates to the Assembly, which also has as its theme Micah 6:8, will select the three winning videos.
The youth groups producing the three winning videos, which will be shown on the Assembly floor, will be awarded a $25,000 permanent endowment fund to benefit their youth ministries or projects of their churches or organizations, Little said.
Ultimately, the Foundation hopes the Web-based project will be the catalyst for long-term communication and collaboration around PC(USA) mission involving both youth and adults.
Inspiring youth is a “way to get everybody involved and excited in the church,” Little said, adding that the site will include message boards and other safe tools to connect people.
After the General Assembly, the video project site could become a stand-alone place that serves as an ongoing online Presbyterian community focused on mission and ministry, he said.
“I want this to be a church site,” Little said.