Over a year ago, the high school youth group that I lead was interacting with a developmental spiritual growth template.

The stages are:

  1. Spiritually Dead
  2. Spiritual Infant
  3. Spiritual Child
  4. Spiritual Young Adult
  5. Spiritual Parent

I ended up teaching this developmental paradigm at our church on a Sunday morning in a sermon called: Are You Hungry?. Here is a link to the graphics: Five Stages of Spiritual Growth.

What that conversation led to was a desire among a handful of our high school students to become spiritual parents. It was almost as if the students themselves caught a vision for spiritual parenting. They didn’t just want to be spiritual consumers (young adult stage), but they wanted to grow to the stage where they get to spiritually parent. They had no idea that this was what their spiritual growth was leading them to… what Jesus was leading them to do: to disciple others.

It was during that conversation that I shared with those handful of high school students that I had some friends that were doing this very thing among high school students over in eastern Europe. I would talk about the stories I heard from David Bordner in Slovenia and Rob Trenckmann in Hungary where high school students were discipling their peers… where their peers in eastern Europe where already spiritual parents (and some, spiritual grandparents). Our high school students eyes got big and they wondered if they could be exposed and trained for this very thing.

That’s when I got the idea to take this group of high school students over to eastern Europe to both learn and partner with my friends. This idea has been percolating for over a year.

About a month ago, through much prayer, waiting, more waiting, more prayer and some planning, we have decided to go to Hungary to partner with my friend Rob Trenckmann.

jvRob serves with a missions organization called Josiah Venture. Rob lives in a city called, Győr. Our high school students are going to join a local church youth group in Győr and participate in a 7-day English camp outreach where Hungarians will learn conversational English alongside American teenagers. The morning of camp consists of English instruction and small group interaction. The afternoon of camp holds some great games and some fun. The evening of camp brings a Gospel talk and small group discussion afterwards. Our students get to engage and converse with their Hungarian peers and share the love of Christ with them in all that they do: in word and in deed.

There are 7 of us going on this trip:

Claire, Lydia, and Amber
Claire, Lydia, and Amber
Jonathan and Evan
Jeremy and Jessica
Jeremy and Jessica

Each of us has to raise:


We are really excited to start a partnership with the church in Győr, Hungary this summer and look forward to hopefully making this an annual experience for our students.

I really sense that it is important to both challenge our high school students and give them some experiences where they can engage in spiritual parenting.

If you feel led to contribute to the fundraising effort of this trip, please send your tax-deductible donation to:

Hayward Wesleyan Church
PO Box 507
Hayward, WI 54843

(please indicate “Hungary 2016” on a slip of paper). Thanks!

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