Timothy + Barnabas Institute Encourages Young Pastors

Johnny Hunt, senior vice president of evangelism and leadership at the North American Mission Board (NAMB), shares a message with participants at the first meeting of the Timothy + Barnabas Institute (TBI). The TBI is specially designed for pastors to give them the opportunity to meet and be mentored by seasoned pastors. NAMB photo

ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) — More than 130 pastors left the first gathering of the Timothy + Barnabas Institute (TBI) at the North American Mission Board (NAMB) encouraged and looking forward to the next two years of coaching and mentorship that will be a part of the program.

For two days, participants heard from keynote speakers and met in smaller cohorts made up of a coach and a group of their peers to discuss their backgrounds and challenges they currently face.

“I walked away from the TBI sessions this week incredibly encouraged and refreshed,” said Jamus Edwards, pastor of Pleasant Valley Community Church in Owensboro, Ky. “Few things are more valuable for a young pastor than being poured into by a more seasoned, mature pastor.”

Pastors and ministry leaders such as Danny Akin, Jimmy Scroggins, Bryant Wright, Vance Pitman, James Merritt, Ken Whitten and Johnny Hunt delivered keynote addresses.

“The sermons at the TBI were especially encouraging to me and my ministry,” said Chip Dean, pastor of the Harbour View campus of Liberty Live Church in Suffolk, Va. “Vance Pitman preached a powerful message on the necessity of corporate prayer and preaching not only in the church but also during the Sunday morning worship gathering.”

Jonathan Akin, NAMB’s director of young leader engagement, helped develop the TBI after hearing a number of pastors describe the need to learn from and be mentored by older pastors.

“Pastoring can be isolating, and while seminary prepares you for much of what a young pastor will encounter in his ministry, there is a difference between learning in a classroom and experiencing challenges for the first time,” Akin said.

“The Timothy + Barnabas Institute is unlike any other conference or event,” Akin continued, “because there is no green room, and the participants have access to the leaders the entire time. They eat together, learn together and worship together.”

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Source: Baptist Press