This is a news update coming from a message sent on 29 November 2022 to Baptist Youth Pastors and Leaders – we’re keen to share this with our wider Baptist whānau – please share this with anyone you think might be interested:

I am writing to you to follow-up on the discussion we had together at our National Hui after Sam Kilpatrick’s outstanding talk on Spectacular Youth. If you missed it, you can check it out HERE.

In the discussion time after Sam’s talk, there was an impassioned plea from our people for there to be greater leadership and communication around Baptist Youth Ministries. Please be assured I listened very carefully to the comments that were made, especially the need for greater support and resourcing of our pastors.

In response to this, I invited the people who stood and spoke at Hui to meet with me in Auckland on Friday last week. There were about sixteen of us all together (the photo above!) and we carried on the Hui discussion with a particular focus on how the future might be different. I was enormously thankful for the people in the room. I came home inspired by the quality of our youth pastors and leaders and their clear desire to bring gospel renewal to people and places in their contexts.

I am keen to let you know that as a result of this discussion we will be looking to employ a Youth Catalyst to work alongside us at the Baptist Support Centre for the purpose of nurturing a compelling shared vision for Baptist Youth Ministries, and to develop a roadmap for turning this vision into reality. Listening and communicating with key stakeholders will be an important part of this process.

It was important to the group that any initiative provided immediate support for our youth pastors and leaders now, this will be one of the key tasks of the Youth Catalyst role.

We discussed how the Catalyst could initially be a three-year appointment and could be shared by more than one person. We worked on the job description together and I am excited to let you know we are now advertising for the role. If you are interested, please check it out here:

Click here for the Youth Catalyst vacancy advertisement and Position Description.

As I write this to you, I am on my first day of a sabbatical break – don’t worry, I will actually take a sabbatical – I just wanted to communicate this with you all. Please be assured the call on my life is to see Baptist faith communities thrive – vibrant ministry and mission to children and youth and families is a crucial part of this. I look forward to working more with our youth pastors and leaders in 2023. Thank you so much for all that you do.

May God bless you heaps


Charles Hewlett is the National Leader of the Baptist Churches of New Zealand. To find out more about the National Leader role, Charles Hewlett, and his writing and the podcast he co-hosts: Baptist People, click here:  

Photo supplied.

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