Asbury Camp Challenges High School Students to Lead

Apply now for Youth Becoming Leaders — an Asbury University camp challenging high school students to lead in church and society (June 6-17).
YBL 2016 participants and faculty posed for a photo on the steps of Hughes Auditorium.

WILMORE, Ky.  — This summer, an Asbury University camp in theology and leadership will challenge high school students from around the nation to become leaders in church and society. 

A two-week residential camp (June 5-16), “Youth Becoming Leaders: High School Christian Leadership and Global Transformation Institute” (YBL) will immerse students in Christian community, theological training, innovative ministry concepts and much more.

Part of Asbury’s ImpactU academic summer camps, YBL is a program for high school students who are committed to Christ, leaders in their local community, academically gifted and discerning a call to full-time ministry. Eligible students must have finished ninth grade by June 2017 and have a Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.3 or higher. A $250 fee covers room, board and activities for the two-week camp. Apply to YBL by April 1 at: 

The theme of this year's camp is "Known," taken from Exodus 3:1-15. YBL will explore the idea that God knows us, we can know God and God calls us to know others. 

“YBL equips high school students for theologically-guided living and decision making,” said Dr. Brian Hull, professor of Youth Ministry at Asbury and project director for YBL. “I’m excited to see how their call to leadership is intensified and empowered as they go home to their communities.”

Bethany Maciejewski ‘20 is a freshman Bible and Theology major at Asbury who attended YBL last summer. She says many lessons from YBL have stayed with her during her first year of college, especially the idea of imitating Jesus’ acceptance of a “difficult cup” in the Garden of Gethsemane.

“My ‘difficult cup’ (cerebral palsy) doesn’t go away, and that’s something I really struggle with,” Maciejewski said. “One of the things we talked about at YBL is how it’s OK not to ‘be OK.’ It’s OK to ask questions and to be angry — you just can’t unpack and stay there. And that’s something I’ve been reminded of frequently as I go from day to day.”

Following YBL, participants are challenged to use what they have learned in a ministry project. For her project, Maciejewski started a blog where she reflects on life, faith, joy and hope. The blog now has nearly 700 followers, and she credits YBL with inspiring her to write.

“YBL gave me the courage to step out and to the things I wanted to do,” Maciejewski said. “I had wanted to blog for a long time, and YBL gave me a platform to do that, as well as an incredible network of people to lean on. Writing is something that’s very important to me, and it’s one of the major ways that I am able to express my love for Jesus.”

Throughout YBL, students enjoy theological instruction from Asbury University and Asbury Theological Seminary faculty, experiential training in spiritual disciplines, global issues research training and much more. Additionally, each student is given an iPad Mini and trained to use it for research and ministry.

On the last day of YBL, students will be joined by mentors of their choice from their home communities. Together, students and mentors will create a ministry plan to complete after YBL. 

YBL is generously funded by a $600,000 grant by the Lilly Endowment, Inc. It is part of Lilly Endowment Inc.’s High School Youth Theology Institutes initiative, which seeks to encourage young people to explore theological traditions, ask questions about the moral dimensions of contemporary issues and examine how their faith calls them to lives of service.


To learn more about YBL, visit:

To discover many more academic summer camps at Asbury, visit:

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