We invite you to look back at our ministry over the past year.
In 2023, in different forms and intensities, we cooperated with half of the youth, which we currently have on record in the evangelical churches within the Czech Republic. We consider synergy with denominations to be a key element of our ministry to young people, which we have developed over the past year both on a bilateral level and through joint projects. KAM’s activities focused primarily on supporting young leaders and youth through personal guidance, various forms of training and inspiration, and outreach programs.
We provided personal accompaniment in 88 congregations/churches in 2023, primarily from AC, CB, SCEAV, etc., where we met with youth or youth activity leaders, team members, and possibly church leaders. The great benefit of this ministry is that it is not a mass group event but individual support focused on the leader’s or team’s specific needs. In this way, we have offered personal care to individuals and support in youth development in local churches, emphasizing the importance of creating a missional culture in youth communities.
In keeping with the current situation and need, there continues to be a great deal of interest from youth workers in a program focused on crisis intervention, mental health, and pastoral care. In the past year, our pastoral staff has been able to offer it for more than 31 different groups or events.
We have also continued to create inspirational online content for youth workers on KAM’s Instagram and Facebook pages. In 2023, we recorded 24 episodes of the Nedopečeno (Unfinished) podcast (Youtube). We are continuing to add to the youth ministry resource database. We are in the final stages of developing e-learning training for new youth leaders in collaboration with the youth departments (AC, BJB, CB, and SCEAV).
Several educational projects were also devoted to missional communities in 2023. At the beginning of the year, we organized a conference, Open Youth Communities, for 30 youth leaders to discuss the topic of mission in the Czech context and share examples of good practice. We have also developed educational material with denominational youth departments on the subject of Open Communities, which we will offer youth at the beginning of 2024. In collaboration with the youth departments (AC, BJB, CB, and SCEAV) and KAM staff from across all departments, we prepared a 2nd Frontline event for 60 youth and youth leaders. The theme for this inspirational retreat was Mentoring in the 21st Century, led by Dave Patty.
We helped with preparations for the School for Youth Leaders of Christian Congregations. The first weekend took place in the autumn in Malenovice. We have planned further training weekends for 2024. Over 20 leaders from across the country attended the school, and together, we explored the topics of leadership, teamwork, and the importance of our ministry.
Several KAM missionaries are also involved in the Apostolic Church’s Youth Leadership Impulz program, where they help with training in leadership, pastoring, and missional youth settings and worship.
In addition, we have also had the opportunity to participate to varying degrees in other youth events such as Festival United, Kristfest, Encounter, and others.
In 2023, we even offered specialized training for worship leaders and worship teams. A group from one church went through the year-long program Worship.ko (comprised of a study, a series of workshops, and cohorts), and two local churches have joined. A 2×2 training intensive (including a study and workshops) took place for another three worship teams, for a total of 45 people. We organized two workshops on technical Arts for 60 sound engineers and projection technicians.
In cooperation with other churches and organizations, Worship.ko co-organized a day-long Praise and Worship Conference in Brno for 230 participants, Evangelization Day in Zlaté Hory, inspirational seminars and workshops in Prague, Trinec, and Vsetín.
Worship.ko was also part of the Na Výšinách festival in Prague, leading praise on the main stage of the festival UNITED in Vsetín with the involvement of several young up-and-coming musicians and had the opportunity to serve at the CB Youth Convention in Havlíčkův Brod.
In 2023, regular relational outreach programs for youth were operating at 21 sites, as follows:
Through regular weekly meetings, these programs grow communities with solid relationships and the opportunity to share life and values with young people. This goal is supported by offering several multi-day events throughout the year. Fusion choirs from 10 countries met in the spring at the Fusiondary International festival, which around 700 people attended. 6 Fusion choirs hosted a camp during the summer. As part of EDGE, we held four frisbee tournaments during the year. In the fall, a joint meeting of the core teams of all these regular KAM outreach programs was held under the title Improve to share, inspire, and train. Quest samplings have continued to be conducted as the youngest of these programs, whether at local youth events or conventions.
There are three new programs ready for piloting:
If you are interested in these new programs, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Over the summer, we partnered with 13 local churches to conduct 11 summer camps connected by the theme Part of the plan. 415 students participated. They were attended by 13 U.S. teams and three interns, for whom involvement in the camps was an intense opportunity for growth in service. The camps opened the door to many new connections with students, which continue through the follow-up activities of local youth.
In the fall, 2 EXIT Tours took place, projects in towns and schools with follow-up programs by local churches, this year enriched by a guest band, Faith Child from England. Over 2000 students, many for the first time in their lives, came into contact with Christians during these two events. Follow-up activities are crucial to retaining newly established contacts with students.
For the fourth year, under the umbrella of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Physical Education, we have been implementing the Komenský – Stories of Humanity project (video) in which 23 school projects have entered the national Changing the World for the Better competition. A total of 96 primary and secondary schools also held 230 lessons and project days for around 5,000 pupils, introducing the inspiring story of J. A. Comenius and teaching how it is possible to overcome the negatives in life and turn them into positives.
During the summer, nearly 30 teachers from all over the country came together for Restart and Summer School of Character at the Conference Center in Malenovice to experience the renewal of their profession. Then, in September, we organized another edition of the traditional Lecturers Conference at the Immanuel Conference Center, attended by 50 lecturers. This event was again an opportunity for a pleasant meeting and professional and spiritual refreshment. Keynote speakers included Rachel Bícová with the topic of Mental Resilience, Dalimil Staněk with a workshop on Self-Harm, and Dave Patty, who gave a closing message and blessing.
In 2023, thanks to our donors’ generosity, we could financially help young Ukrainian refugees get involved in their local communities and support their participation in summer activities organized by Czech churches. During the summer of 2023, this fund supported 20 churches/organizations from all over the Czech Republic, 31 events, and 709 young Ukrainians. Approximately 2.1 million CZK was used to support these young Ukrainians directly. Financial support from the Yellow and Blue Fund also enabled 18 Czech volunteers to travel to Ukraine, where they helped out at camps and retreats organized by local churches.
At the Malenovice Conference Center, we created facilities for various events organized by KAM, our parent organization Josiah Venture (JV), churches, and Christian or secular organizations. We are happy that the Malenovice campus has served as a base and space for mental and spiritual recharge for all these types of programs.
During the summer season, we hosted 11 congregations/churches, six youth camps, 11 educational events, and nine schools at the Conference Center. We had 20 youths helping with operations as part-time workers, for whom the experience was an opportunity to grow in responsibility and diligence. The total occupancy of the Conference Center in 2023 was 21,216 person-nights.
In 2024, we are planning a new project – a package of support for youth leaders in the form of a short stay at a hotel aimed at restarting, relaxing, or studying. We are excited to support your youth leader! If you already know someone who would welcome this, we’d be happy to send them more information – email email@example.com.
Thank you to all churches, organizations, and individuals for their long-term support.
I am grateful for all the churches and youth we partnered with in 2023. Thank you to all the supporters and partners for standing behind our staff, programs, and projects. I greatly appreciate your contribution to forming young leaders and healthy youth in Czech churches.
In April 2024, I will officially hand over the role of KAM Director to Jakub Vejmělka as my successor. I will continue to be part of Josiah Venture (KAM’s parent organization), focusing on supporting national leaders in other countries and promoting generosity in Europe within the EGCC organization. I believe that this change will also be a new opportunity for KAM and that it will bear new fruit in collaboration with you.