Last month, First Priority Greater Birmingham held its fall Leader’s Summit at Valleydale Church. This was the first of two leadership training events being held during the 2019-2020 school year. With school systems’ calendars changing, we saw the need to offer multiple summits in order to reach as many students as possible. The Summit is a high-impact, one-day conference that features live music and inspirational messages geared toward highly motivated student leaders and teacher sponsors involved in First Priority campus clubs. The fall conference theme was “Focus” where students were challenged to focus on reaching every last student with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The second summit for this school year will be held in January 2020. This is First Priority’s 15th year of holding these important training events and we look forward to the new opportunities that lie ahead.
Over 300 students, teachers, youth leaders, parents and volunteers from nearly 30 middle and high schools across Central Alabama attended our event last month. Local school boards of education continue to endorse the program, allowing a group of students to attend during the school day and count the event as a field trip. Superintendents continue to excuse First Priority students and teacher sponsors to attend because they see the value in this type of leadership training event. They also witness the positive impact it makes on students’ lives.
The morning began with praise and worship followed by the first session led by First Priority Greater Birmingham President Greg Davis. Greg opened with the “Focus” and big vision message and discussed the importance of seeing the bull’s-eye. “We have to stay alert and fixed on the goal of First Priority, which is to reach Every Last One,” said Greg. First Priority’s Debi DeBoer then led an intense training on our HOPE strategy, a 4-week cycle that is repeated every month. Students were given a comprehensive plan they can use along with tools to reach their campus on a larger scale. First Priority Area Director James Cato then encouraged clubs to develop ministry teams using our Bless, Pray, Serve, Tell Strategy. Ministry teams are small groups of Christians on campus in a specific area of ministry outside First Priority clubs. Simply put, ministry teams give every Christian a way to connect on campus by using their spiritual gifts to serve others. Ministry teams encourage students to think “Beyond the Meeting.”
Students then enjoyed lunch from Chick-fil-A. After lunch, Joey Hill concluded the day with sharing about limits being our launching pads to trust God and press into the heart of God. “If we have the heart of God, we will have the goals of God to go and reach our campus,” said Joey. Students left enthusiastic and ready to reach Every Last One!