A founder of Bradford's Sorted project, Andy Milne, has been appointed by the Archbishop of York to lead a new Missional Youth Church Network (MYCN) beginning in the North of England.
It is in joint partnership with Church Army and the Archbishop of York Youth Trust.
The vision of MYCN is to establish at least 30 missional youth churches (MYC) over the next five years, enabling 11-18 year olds to build community and discover faith in Jesus Christ. Local schools and colleges, churches and community projects will work together in partnership to reimagine church for this generation. Youth leaders and volunteers will become part of a wider learning network accessing training, encouragement and support for one another as they build for the future.
Andy Milne, a Church Army evangelist said: “‘I am excited to be involved in MYCN.
"It will give thousands of young people the opportunity to hear the good news of Jesus Christ and connect with local Christians. Teams and volunteer leaders will enable young people to create new contextual missional churches - set up by young people for young people.
"They will explore faith at their own pace and then discover what it means to live life as a disciple of Jesus within a Christian supportive community.
"We will then build a wider learning network of leaders and young people for support, training and encouragement.
"Could you have an MYC in your area? I am seeking to build partnerships where this is ripe to happen.
"Please do get in touch with me.”
He and his wife Tracy began pioneering Sorted, a fresh expression, in Idle, Greengates aand Thorpe Edge in late 2003.
Beginning as a youth church, often reaching teens from deprived areas, Sorted grew and eventually multiplied as new youth fresh expressions were started. Young adult and young family groups followed as teenagers turned into twentiy-somethings.
In 2016, Andy wrote the book ‘The DNA of Pioneer Ministry’ with Mike Moynagh to tell the story and help others learn from what has happened so they might begin a fresh expression themselves.
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu said: “On my pilgrimage across the Diocese of York, I spoke to many young people who were not keen on attending Church but who were fascinated by the love of God and wanted to know more about Jesus Christ – this is a live issue for them.
"Young people have so much to learn. In Jesus Christ they can receive new life and share this life-transforming encounter with their friends. I believe that the Missional Youth Church Network will help transform young people’s lives and make, together, Jesus Christ visible.”
The Chief Executive of Church Army, Mark Russell, said: “We face a massive challenge to reach more young people with the Good News of Jesus Christ, and we need new forms of church to connect with them where they are. MYCN is an initiative whose time has come.”
Andy Milne will lead MYCN from 1st April 2019. Find out more at www.myc.network shortly or please contact John Day at: email john.day [at] archbishopofyork.org