Between now and November, one hundred more young preachers will register for the National Festival in Atlanta, Georgia. This means that right now there are 16 young preachers who have registered through this web site.
Those 16 list ten different states as their place of residence: Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Missouri, New York, Kentucky, Illinois, New Jersey, Ohio, and North Carolina. Before registration closes, another 25 states will join this list.
Some of the names on the registration list are familiar: Tiffany Wood, Raymond Forte, Wesley Spears, and Jessica James; they all preached this past year in Louisville. Christian Smith is registered; he has preached at all three National Festival and served three years on the Young Preachers Leadership Team.
No other member of the Leadership Team and no member of the Gospel Catalyst Network has registered yet. Hmmmmmmm.
There are some new names: Martel Stevens from Florida, Darschand Raiford from New York, and Kendra Spearman from Illinois. When I ask young preachers how they heard about the Academy of Preachers and the National Festival, most will say: “I know somebody who preached last year” or “I watched a video on your YouTube channel.” Our videos have been viewed more than 110,000 times!
There will be 116 slots for young preachers at the 2013 National Festival in Atlanta. We will also take four to constitute the waiting list; and every year a few of our young preachers have been unable to attend at the last minute (weather, illness, money, etc), so getting on the waiting list is almost a sure bet for preaching.
There are fewer slots this year because we are adding two workshop sessions: one on Thursday afternoon and one on Friday afternoon. You can see the complete Festival schedule elsewhere on this website.
And of course the whole registration process is on line this year, a change from the first three years. It is quicker, easier, and gives us better information.
I hope to speak personally with each young preacher who registers, and I look forward to meeting each of you when you arrive at the Grand Hyatt in Atlanta next January.