Prepare Day 3: Recap + Photos

Tuesday July 19th, the 3rd (& final) day of Prepare, was a great day for the 45+ New UM Chaplains & Campus Ministers gathered to learn, connect, and worship together. The morning began with an intentional time of song & prayer which we call “Living the Good Life.” The morning keynote presentation was “Growing Your Community of Faith” with Rev. Matt Smith of the Table UMC in Sacramento, CA. The Table is a new UM faith community forming in Sacramento and is led by co-Pastors Linda Dew-Hiersoux and Matt Smith.

Matt told the story of the formation and beginnings of the Table UMC as well as its connections to college students in the Sacramento area–including many ‘non-traditional’ students at Sacramento State, like veterans and others who had found their way to college at a different age and stage than typical college students. The people of the Table UMC are seeking to be “rooted in grace, growing in faith, and reaching in love” to the community and people around them. Matt shared that one of the challenges he experiences is in re-learning language to better communicate with the community–that is, that many of us have been in church “too long” and that when we talk with people who’ve not been in church that “our [church] language may have little or no meaning in their lives.”

Later in the morning we had workshop sessions 3 & 4 which included conversations and presentations on Student Discipleship with Ashlee Alley, Chaplain, Southwestern College; Board Development/Fundraising with Galen Hora, Fundraising Consultant, Ecumenical Campus Ministry Team; Leadership Development with Vance Rains, Campus Pastor, Florida State Wesley Foundation; Reaching the Campus with Paul Massingill, Campus Pastor, FIU-MDC Wesley Foundation; Envisioning Campus Ministry with Creighton Alexander, Campus Pastor, University of Alabama; and Students and Their Call to Ministry with DJ del Rosario, Director of Young Adult Ministry Discernment and Enlistment, GBHEM.

For the afternoon session Dave Palmer of Dunk Tank Marketing & EGM Films talked about the use of film in collegiate ministry settings. He shared previews of a film called “Little Town of Bethlehem:” An inspiring true story of three men–and Israeli Jew, a Palestinian Muslim, and a Palestinian Christian–in a land gripped by fear, hatred, and division. Expected to be enemies, they instead strive together to end the cycle of violence. Visit for more information.

To close our event, the Rev. Michael McCord, Director of Resources and Training for Collegiate Ministry at GBHEM, offered a prayer of commissioning and sending forth for the new Chaplains and Campus Ministers where we laid hands on each other. It was a powerful ending to a fantastic, hope-filled event.

Prepare 2011 was a mentor-based event for new United Methodist chaplains and campus ministers for learning, conversation, collaboration, worship, and connection-making! Around 70 mentors, staff, chaplains, and campus ministers gathered together for this 3 day training event, which was held at GBHEM Headquarters in Nashville, TN. More info at


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