The first group of messengers and visitors to arrive in Houston for the Annual Meeting of Texas Baptists was a little different than normal. They were all under 35.
STREAM, a special addition to the meeting schedule, began Nov. 15 on the Union Station rooftop overlooking Minute Maid Park and downtown Houston with a little over 100 attending.
“I enjoyed meeting people who all have a heart to live for Christ”, Emily Prevost, associate director of the Center for Effective Leadership said. “We just hung around, talked and shared experiences. It set a great tone for STREAM workshops and worship. It’s the whole reason why we held this meeting.”
The next day about 220 under-35 attendees filled workshops on living missionally, human trafficking, the Texas Hunger Initiative, challenges of church leadership, the arts and worship and creation care: theology and action. “The STREAM workshops were created on topics that appeal to, interest and apply to Baptist leaders of our generation,” Stephen Reeves, legislative counsel with the Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission.
During a break in the Annual Meeting schedule, several of the STREAM attendees who were not registered messengers did mission work at Houston Food Bank as a part of their Feeding America emphasis.
Brittany Green, of First Baptist Church in Marshall came with East Texas Baptist University for extra credit for her ministry formation class and to get an in on what’s going on in Baptist churches around and the BGCT.
“After coming, I realized that the BGCT is about all kinds of ministries going on and the outreach that’s going on. It was also great to see Christian Motorcycle Association recognized as I’m a member.” Green attended the human trafficking workshop and learned “where I can be needed as a missionary and a praying Christian and where I can help as a consumer.”
Paul Holt, a messenger and director of communication from Bethlehem Baptist Church in Flint said, of his first-ever Texas Baptist event said, “I’ve been impressed since first arriving. It’s been a movement ever since we began a partnership with the BGCT. I came to network and find new ways of ministry in communication and to help myself and my relationship with God.”
“I really enjoyed the event for the younger ministers. I’ve been interested in this and it’s been a success so far,” said Patrick Adair, youth pastor at First Baptist Church in Waco who attended the STREAM session on Challenges of Church Leadership. “It was great to speak openly with a representative from BGCT and be heard about helping young ministers succeed.”
By Rand Jenkins, Texas Baptists Communications