youth worker, youth ministry, transformation

Trends vs. Transformation

By Doug Franklin November 19, 2009

I am here at YS Atlanta to connect with youth workers and help them understand resources for student leadership. But I am also here to watch the passing of YS. As many of you know, it’s the end of an era. YS will make an announcement tomorrow about their future and it should be very different than their past. YS has been the leader of youth ministry trends due to their popular youth worker conference. They have been the voice of youth ministry for the past 20 years. I don’t personally know any of their leaders and I have never worked with them, but I have been a customer of theirs for the past eight years as an exhibitor at the conferences. My take is that over the past few years, YS has been about trends and very little about transformation. They have often promoted personalities over best practices, allowing the loudest voices a platform. This has always bothered me. They would have 8,000 youth workers in a room and use the time to advocate fringe ideas. But youth workers have now spoken and rejected the message, giving birth to a new day for YS. I am looking to the future. I will always honor the past and the great things that Mike Yaconelli and Wayne Rice did for youth ministry (we all owe them a great debt), but I am excited about the future and I hope that YS will be about ideas that will help youth workers be transformational in the lives of students.

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More