Category: Mission

Lifting Up Christ in Chiang Mai

On July 5–8, 2018, representatives gathered from 26 different nations for the YMCA World Mission Network Conference. This opportunity was more than a pre-event to the YMCA World Council. It was an intentional effort to bring together Christian leaders from the YMCA movement for a time of inspiration, instruction and challenge.

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San Antonio Leads the Way

When you think of San Antonio, Texas, you probably think of people walking around in cowboy hats, the famous River Walk, the San Antonio Spurs basketball team, fantastic Tex-Mex food and, our course, the Alamo. It’s a vibrant, growing city that relishes its historic culture and diverse population.

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New YMCAs Connecting with the Network

It’s exciting to see how God is growing the impact of the US Mission Network across the country as new YMCA’s learn about this collaborative effort. While connection with our movement is purely voluntary, we grateful for those associations that have welcomed our message and begun to implement a stronger Christian mission emphasis in their own local associations. Here are a couple of encouraging stories about some YMCAs that have recently connected with the US Mission Network.

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The Power of Presence

One of the key strategies in the work of the US Mission Network is to establish a presence at YMCA events around the country. Our National Director, Larry Whittlesey, invests a good deal of his time visiting YMCA conferences, state alliance meetings, AYP events and local YMCAs.

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Retired? I Don’t Think So

The US Mission Network was well represented at a gathering of leaders from the Christian movement within the YMCA. Six members of our Board and Ministry Cabinet were part of this unique gathering in London, along with representatives from India, Hong Kong, Germany, Chile, England, and Africa.

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Reaching Across the World

David Byrd, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Kansas City and Board Member for the US Mission Network, has always been a doer. This week he’s focused on something a bit more international. David has flown halfway across the world to participate in the opening of the brand new Ramallah YMCA, a branch of the East Jerusalem YMCA.

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Communicating the Mission

One of the ways YMCAs around the country express their Christian heritage is through wall graphics and pictures posted around their facility. Done correctly they can communicate a powerful message of the YMCA’s mission without offending those who may not adhere to the Christian faith. Recently the YMCA of Columbia-Willamette commissioned a series of such wall displays to install in their various locations.

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USMN Update

The US Mission Network was formally organized just over three and a half years ago by a group of YMCA CEOs, COOs, Chaplains and key volunteers. It brought together remnants of the former John 17:21 conferences, along with those who participated in an annual gathering of chaplains and Y church pastors at Silver Bay Conference Center. A lot has happened over these years, so we thought it might be time to give everyone a quick update on the progress we’ve made and our plans for the future.

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Multiple Models for Maximum Ministry

One of the questions we get all the time at the US Mission Network is, “what are we supposed to do to be a real Christian YMCA?” The fact is, we can’t tell you what to do, but we can tell you how to do it! As the old saying goes, “If you’ve been to one Y, you’ve been to one Y!”

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A New Vision in New Orleans

In the midst of this city there are two YMCA associations. The Dryades YMCA is the historic “black” Y, while the YMCA of Greater New Orleans is the traditional “white” Y. Over the years of their long history, the two associations have had a polite but separate existence. But a new vision is being lived out by the CEOs and their leadership teams.

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Challenge 21

The World Alliance of YMCAs was founded in 1855 at its first World Conference, held in Paris. At that time, conference participants developed the YMCA’s first mission statement, the Paris Basis.

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