Introductory Seminar on the EBF’s New "Horizons" Material
Y e r e v a n – How Christians can build bridges to the younger generation in their own countries was the central topic of discussion at a recent seminar held by the European Baptist Federation (EBF) for youth leaders in Yerevan/Armenia. Dr. Jeff Carter, the EBF’s Youth Coordinator, and his assistant Vasil Vasilev (both from Prague) introduced the 50 participants from Armenia and the neighbouring countries of Georgia, Azerbaijan and the independent region of Nagorno-Karabakh to a youth ministry training course entitled “Horizons”. It consists of four units with 24 modules each and intends to equip youth leaders for work in a contemporary, local context. Jeff Carter attempted to make workers more aware of present-day youth culture. Vasil Vasilev noted that young people are often marginalised in the church – especially in the countries of Eastern Europe. Yet such a practice cannot be in agreement with the will of God. Young people can with their unique gifts and talents play an important role in building the kingdom of God. This view was also supported by the “Horizons” course material, which was developed by Jeff Carter and Vasil Vasilev along with the British missionary Arthur Brown - presently active as a lecturer in Beirut/Lebanon.
A festive worship service in Yerevan’s Baptist church with 130 participants proved to be the high point of the seminar. Jeff Carter spoke in his sermon on the Parable of the Sower from the Gospel of Luke. A church member called during the service for a life of discipleship in following Christ. Two listeners answered the appeal and were converted.
The two guests from Prague had been invited by Asatur Nahapetyan (Yerevan), General-Secretary of the Armenian Baptist Union. Armenia has 142 Baptist congregations with a membership of more than 4.200.