Effective Christian Ministry (ECM) combines the timeless wisdom of the Church with current research on faith formation to equip people to identify the 5 needs in the lives of young people, address the 5 challenges they face today, and implement the 5 practices that help to form faithful Orthodox Christians. ECM provides multiple levels of training for anyone who wants to lead young people to Christ – including ministry leaders, parents, clergy, youth workers, and teachers.
In January of 2020, The Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries (Y2AM) launched the Effective Christian Ministry (ECM) Online Course as a response to the all-too-often asked question, “Why are so many young people leaving the Church and what can we do about it?” With a deep love for Christ and his Church, we distilled decades of ministry experience and insights into over 5 hours of video content . In this course, we didn’t just diagnose the problem, we also laid out a road map of the principles and practices that build more effective, Christ-centered ministry to people of all ages. As a result, over 1,200 people have taken the course, people who are seeing, by God’s grace, a personal and ministry transformation.
In 2021, Y2AM began our first ECM Cohort, a learning community of faith and transformation that helps parishes go further in applying the Practices and Principles of Effective Christian Ministry. The ECM Cohort was a direct response to a study of course participants completed in December of 2020. What did we learn? That while many were already taking actionable steps to transform ministry, they desired more coaching on how to both apply ECM practices in their parish and build broader parish support.
To date, we have been able to serve 18 parish and diocese teams thanks to the generous grant from the Archbishop Iakovos Leadership 100 Fund (www.L100.org). With the support of our wonderful, Christ-centered ECM Coaches, parish Teams can embark on a 9-month journey together with prayer, training, reflection, and projects that are meant to facilitate, by God’s grace, (1) personal spiritual growth, (2) Team discernment, and (3) long-term parish ministry transformation.
Our Vision is that all young people will know Christ and receive the gift of His Salvation. Our Mission is to create transformative parish ministries for today’s young people, living in today’s culture, who are facing today’s challenges. While we are passionate about this work, our trust is in God who is everywhere present and filling all things, knowing that while we labor, it is “God who gives the increase” (1 Corinthians 3:7).
We invite you to join us in this ministry transformation, Because Young People Don't Need to Fall Away from Faith!