I have been so blessed to serve as the Young Leaders Initiative Director over the last 7+ years. The growth of Motown Mission, the launch of Motor City Wesley, the continuation of our Summers of service for college students, and new opportunities like the Foundry House and revGO.org have shown me the possibilities for missional impact with Christian young people in and around Detroit. And, YLI remains dedicated to developing such ministries in connection with the United Methodist Church that "engage young people as leaders for the transformation of the church and world."
So, I celebrate our ongoing fruitfulness even as I must announce my departure as Director of YLI beginning in this new year. I will be heading on to some other exciting ministry opportunities within the connection but will join the Board of Directors of YLI as that group makes new staffing plans for the future of our work here.
Each day I say thanks for the young people who care passionately about their faith in Jesus, and his call to share love, justice and mercy in the world. I am confident in YLI's future, amazed at this organizations past accomplishments, and thankful for God's gracefulness in all the areas in which we can be better. I hope you will all keep YLI and its ministries in your prayers, and join us in all the work with young people there is yet to do!
Rev. Carl Thomas Stroud Gladstone
PS - Last little bit of playing with the numbers is below. Always nice to see our annual investment in the missional experiences of young people illustrated!