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UNITE Ministry Reaches Isolated Young Adults

posted on November 19, 2014, under Member by

Theology major Ryan Becker tells Southern Adventist University students about UNITE. (Photo: George Nelson)

Theology major Ryan Becker tells Southern Adventist University students about UNITE. (Photo: George Nelson)

by Angela Baerg

During his senior year at Forest Lake Academy (FLA), Ryan Becker lost his father to a heart attack and discovered that his mother had Stage 4 lung cancer.

“Suddenly, I realized there was a very real possibility I could be attending my graduation as an orphan,” recalls Ryan, a member of Florida Hospital Church.

As Ryan reeled from the news, his FLA classmates and teachers rallied around his family. He always plugged into the many spiritual activities on campus, but the support of his FLA family strengthened his faith and took his appreciation for faith-based relationships to a new level. Miraculously, his mother went into complete remission in four months.

As a freshman at Southern Adventist University the following year, Ryan bonded with classmates through campus ministries, spiritual discussions, and prayer with his professors and peers. For the second time in his life, Ryan found himself embraced by a rich spiritual community, and the desire of his heart grew clear—he wanted to create a ministry to connect young Adventists who feel isolated.

“Some people don’t have an Adventist school and are one of only a few young adults in their church,” Ryan observes. “Some people may wish for meaningful outreach and not know where to begin. Others might have just moved to a new area and not know any other Adventists. We keep losing so many young adults who are on the fringe. I really hope that UNITE can help them find meaningful ways to engage their faith while reconnecting with Jesus, each other, and local churches.”

Now two years old, UNITE is all about accessibility. The ministry has a web site full of free resources, a Twitter feed, Facebook page, and e-mail updates that alert followers to ministry opportunities in their areas. If young adults wish to create new ministries or small groups where none exist, UNITE matches them with like-minded people and churches to make it happen. Its outreach also includes periodic OneDay conferences to give isolated believers a chance to talk about important spiritual topics and to make new friends.

“The people I met at FLA and Southern fill each other with hope, encourage each other in our faith, and inspire each other to take action,” says Ryan. “I hope UNITE can help everyone find relationships like that.”

Learn more about UNITE at http://www.uniteconference.org/


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