Friday, March 20, 2015

AMEC Children's Ministry Conference 2015

Paul and I spent the weekend of March 13-14 with our children's ministry leaders in Sibiu!  This weekend marked our first ever opportunity for the leaders to go away together to learn and grow in our ministry and in our relationships with each other!  We had two disappointing cancellations at the last minute (one due to illness and one due to an un-accommodating boss), but even so, there were 8 of us who were able to attend!  It was a full weekend of quality training and fun time together.

We left Reghin around 1 p.m. on Friday and arrived to Sibiu just after 4 p.m.  Paul drove the minibus through the mountains and got us there safely!  We had some time to explore the historic city center together before the conference began!  The city center of Sibiu is a special place to Paul and me: it was the site of several long and fun getting-to-know-you conversations in the summer of 2012.  We kinda feel like it's where we fell in love!  So, we enjoyed being back there together as a married couple.  

After a quick walk through the square, we finally arrived to a packed house at the AMEC Children's Ministry Conference.  The conference was held in a large church, and it was full almost to the brim!  The theme for the conference was Aim for Excellence, and Friday night's session was about excellence in our relationship with God.  Throughout the conference, we all received tons of free materials, usually when we finished a session, and the free materials started on Friday night!  We are so thankful to have access to quality teaching materials for our kids.  (AMEC is the Romanian branch of the international organization Child Evangelism Fellowship)

On Saturday, we got to hear several great speakers on the topics of excellence in our relationships in the church, excellence in our relationships with kids and parents, and excellence in preparation.  Paul even accepted an award on behalf of Apalina for having the largest regular children's meeting of anyone at the conference!  We enjoyed wonderful worship times and opportunities to visit with other children's workers from all over Romania!  It was a wonderful weekend... but don't take my word for it! :)

"For me, the conference was a really big blessing, especially when we received clay to work with in our hands. We needed to make something from it. I made a heart. While I was working on it, I saw how I left my fingerprints on it and how easy it was to form the clay. At the end, the result of the work gave to me a really big joy! I understood that I have to be like clay in my God's hands (obedient, easy to work with, etc.), to make visible God's fingerprints, His work, and His love in my heart in mission, especially in children's ministry." - Zozo K.

Emy, Anna Maria, Alina, Zozo, Attila, Ildiko, Paul

"It was a blessed weekend for me, and I'm happy that I was there. God bless you all who helped us to go there. At the conference, I heard so much good advice about how I should teach the children. I hope that I will be a better children's teacher."- Emy T.

Some of our crew on the bus

"The meetings were so helpful.  I really learned what it means to serve and how I can serve in my ministry to the children.  Through these days, God taught me how I can do many things better as I serve.  A big thanks to those who gave so willingly so that we could be a part of this." - Attila M.

Worship time at the conference

"I have such joyful memories when I think about the last weekend because it was such a great opportunity to be a part of the children's ministry conference in Sibiu.  I'm thankful to God for the opportunity to be there and to hear from those who spoke about working with children.  I'm excited as I look forward to using the things that I learned in this conference in my ministry with children." - Ildiko N.

Thanks to God, through your generosity, we were able to cover the costs of the conference for all who attended.  This amount included accommodation, food, transportation, and part of the conference registration fee.  We were also able to purchase some additional materials to use in our work with the kids!  Thank you so much!!  We can't wait for next year!!


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