Ray Charles tells me Georgia should be on my mind, especially since our 2013 National Festival of Young Preachers is there this coming January. But right now, Texas is on my mind.
Texas is the site of our Regional Festival of Young Preachers, September 28-29. Austin, to the exact, hosted by Seminary of the Southwest and Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
Those institutions are but two of our 11 Partners in the great state of Texas.
Two are Founding Partners: Truett Seminary of Baylor University in Waco. From the first they have had two campus festivals each academy year and are sending six young preachers to the Texas Regional Festival; and the South Texas School of Christian Ministry in Corpus Christi, a division of Hardin-Simons University in Abilene. We hope the Texas Regional Festival will feature young preachers from both Corpus Christi and Abilene.
The other nine are National Partners: Joel Gregory Ministries of Ft. Worth, the Texas Conference of Churches in Austin, Brite Divinity School of Texas Christian University in Ft. Worth, Perkins School of Theology at SMU in Dallas, Messenger College in Euless, Huston-Tilloston University in Austin, and the Texas Methodist Foundation Institute for Clergy and Congregational Excellence also in Austin, plus the two Austin seminaries.
Participation in the Regional Festival is not limited to these schools. In fact, it is not even limited to Texas! Of the 20 (out of 36) preaching slots already reserved three are from out of state, and I know one other who is coming…from Joplin, Missouri.
The Texas Regional Festival promises to be grand, but I have something bigger in mind: the 2015 National Festival of Young Preachers, in Dallas/Ft. Worth. If we can generate another 8-10 National Partners in that metropolis we should be in fine condition. So we are looking for businesses, congregations, denominations, institutions and organizations who will collaborate with us to “identify, network, support, and inspire young people in their call to gospel preaching.” Who can resist such a mission?
But if you want to preach at the Texas Regional Festival, better hurry! All the slots will soon be taken.