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At the Black & Reformed Conference at Angel Community Church in Muskegon, MI, I was honored to be one of the pastors who have served in the CRC for 15 years or longer. It doesn't seem so long ago when Dr.'s Bob Price and Reggie Smith met with me in Grand Rapids (15 years ago!) to "get me ready" for the new work God called me to.

I appreciate the article on the Black and Reformed event in the July/August Banner; however, I wish we had pictures of the young leaders who presented at the conference. It would have been "a powerful picture" to have both young and mature leaders on the same page because we truly are on the same page in serving God's kingdom.  

This leads to my question, "What are we doing in our churches to intentionally raise up young Black and Reformed leaders?"

This question is prompted by my personal passion for leadership and young people. What are we doing that is working and where are we seeing favor and fruit from our labors? For those of us who are leaders, we understand the importance of developing young leaders.

I would love to hear from you!


Rev Posie, This is a very challenging post and question. There are built in church structures to involve adults, fewer for youth. Each minister and council has opportunities to ensure Youth development.

How? From early childhood, parents and council can form youth to be leaders by including and encouraging youth participation in church events, planning and worship.

The greatest words to build self confidence are "You've done well." Children achieve when they have structured kindness based encouragement. Let youth plan an event, not be told what to do.

yes, constructive criticism is sometimes needed and should be done in love.

Cadets is the structured group that can be a base. Juneteenth, MLK, KWANZAA are cultural events for Youth and family participation.

one last comment: our children and Youth sitting in the pews hear adult tone and tenor very well. Thus we must prayerfully consider how WE speak and act around them. They take their ques from us.

Thank you Fronse for your response to this challenging and relevant question.

As we look at what is being exposed in our country today (more specifically racism and police brutality), it is so important for our churches to know how to biblically, contextually and culturally help raise African American next generation leaders. We have a powerful role to play in raising up our young leaders and modeling good leadership before.  There is a place for them to serve mightily in advancing God's kingdom. We have to help them discover their God-given gifts, strengths and callings at an early age. It requires intentionality.

You are right about the importance of adult influences and the need for healthy role models in every arena of life. They are impressionable and some are faced with many negative, unhealthy role models.

We pray for God's guidance and the Spirit's power.  I am thankful for the many years of the Black and Reformed Youth Conference and its educational scholarship for young people.  I believe there are other encouraging stories about the good things our young people are doing in God's work.  Every seed we sow will reap a harvest!

Halfway through our 2018 Black History Month our challenges continue.

Better communication and smiles go a long way to reconciliation.

i pray God grants us patience, persistence and tenacity climbing Jacob’s Ladder?

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