On the second weekend of January, 100 people aged 18-75 with a shared passion to see young people across Ireland encounter and serve Jesus, came together at Ovoca Manor in Wicklow for Momentum.
It all started with a cup of coffee and a conversation between two leaders about collaboration. A year later several organisations including Scripture Union, Alpha Ireland, YFC Ireland, ourselves, the Church of Ireland and representatives from Catholic youth organisations jointly ran a training weekend that we hope is the start of something much bigger.
Ireland has one of the youngest populations in Europe. According to the 2016 census 33% of the population are under 25. A generation of young people who are increasingly unlikely to encounter Jesus, never mind cross the door of a church. We wanted to encourage, excite and equip people volunteering and working with young people across the country. There are many people passionate about seeing young lives transformed who are working by themselves with little in the way of support or resources. With Momentum we want to start gathering people, encouraging and equipping them to serve and impact young people with the love of Jesus.
It was amazing to be part of Momentum – a mixture of workshops, talks, reflective sessions, resource taster sessions, lots of cups of tea and coffee and great food. We were excited to deliver a leadership training workshop and a taster session for RISE – which has led to opportunities for new RISE programmes to be delivered by youth workers. Above all we are thankful to see leaders encouraged and equipped, and collaboration sparked.
“This workshop was a brilliant resource for my ministry, not just my youth.”
“We are going to create a vision and more structured plan.”
“The workshop helped me put words on why our team is not working and gave me a possible solution to how we can communicate better and create more ownership.”
As Innovista Ireland, we want to see people and places across Ireland changed for good through local mission movements. Momentum is one step towards that vision as churches and Christian organisations collaborate and connect people in local areas who hadn’t previously engaged with each other.
“Momentum was a really life-giving experience for me – it gave me a new lease of life when I really needed it.”