VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 7/14/16)—The talents and contributions of next-generation leaders were spotlighted during the 2016 Asian Conference and Convocation last month at First Baptist Church, Haddonfield, N.J. Sponsored by American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) and the Alliance of Asian American Baptist Churches, the event was attended by more than 150 individuals, including youth and young adults.
Following the “Let Young Eagles Fly: Next Generation Leadership” theme, plenary speakers the Rev. Dr. Mia Chang, senior pastor of NextGen Church, West Windsor, N.J., and the Rev. Sun Kim, pastor of First Baptist Church, Des Moines, Wash., addressed God’s challenge to ministry and the need for next-generation leadership.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the Asian population grew faster than any other race group in the United States between 2000 and 2010, and is projected to reach more than 40.6 million by 2050. In addition, Asian American churches are growing in rapid pace with emerging Burma diaspora congregations.
“The conference was a great time to not only be among other believers in the community of Christ but to explore the deeper aspects of our mission for Jesus,” said 16-year-old attendee Suan Sonna. “I enjoyed having my voice heard and the voices of other young Christians honored.”
Conference events included “Picnic in the Park,” sponsored by American Baptist Churches of New Jersey’s Greater Delaware Valley Association, as well as multicultural worship and learning experiences.
“The Asian Conference, for me, was a mountaintop experience, where we learned from one another and shared a time of spiritual revival and encouragement,” said Kim. “We certainly have many mentors and leaders who can effectively teach the future hope of our American Baptist Churches USA churches. I hope that this mode of communication and learning will continue for many years to come.”
ABHMS Executive Director Dr. Jeffrey Haggray was impressed by the enthusiasm of the event’s young participants. In closing remarks, Haggray encouraged them to maintain their desire to become great leaders.
More information about Asian Ministries is available online at www.abhms.org or by contacting the Rev. Florence Li, ABHMS national coordinator, Asian Church Ministries, at Florence.Li@abhms.org or 1.800.222.3872, x2468.
American Baptist Home Mission Societies ministers as the caring heart and serving hands of Jesus Christ across the United States and Puerto Rico through a multitude of initiatives that focus on leadership, discipleship and healing communities.
American Baptist Churches is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with over 5,200 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.