Belgium: Young leaders grow together

Ministry continues through multiplication. Multiplication happens through empowering students to lead. Every two years, IFES Europe multiplies their efforts by investing in their student leaders through the Student Leadership Formación (SLF). The conference provides mentorship to young leaders across Europe. Sem Thomas, from IFES Belgium, attended the training in 2009. Now, he is a full-time staff member with his movement. He says that he is still in contact with at least six former participants in Flanders. Each person is either a church leader or has served in a movement for several years. Sem says,

“All of them have since grown as leaders. I would like to believe that SLF had an impact in how they lead now.”

Sem has also watched his own students grow as a result of attending SLF. Ruth was a student who showed leadership potential. Upon Sem’s recommendation, she attended SLF where she was empowered to step into new roles.

“Sending Ruth to SLF was my way of helping her to see her potential better. After going to SLF as a participant, she decided to be more involved in her local student group, where she became the president. Later she joined our staff team and went back to SLF as a community group leader. Then later she returned to be on the organizing team.”

This year, SLF will look a little different due to COVID-19. What once was a two-week conference has now lengthened to a 10-month course to compensate for going online. Though the format has changed, the goals have not. Participants will cross cultural barriers to collaborate, create, learn, and receive mentorship. The training will focus especially on equipping young leaders to adapt to the changing circumstances.

SLF begins this month, so this week let’s pray for the young leaders involved.

  • Pray for the new online format. Pray for the technology involved, for strong internet signals, and that participants would feel a strong sense of community with their peers even though they are not meeting in person.
  • Pray for a sense of direction for participants. Pray that God would reveal the areas where they are gifted. Pray that they would grow in recognising how to use these gifts to serve others.
  • Pray for the organizers involved. Pray that they would have many creative ideas to remain adaptable and organized in the new format. Pray for wisdom as they mentor and guide participants.
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