I first learned about the Rooted Conference through a friend who is on to board of directors. We served in youth ministry together and she encouraged me to attend right after I had moved to begin seminary at Duke Divinity School in the Fall of 2010. At the time I thought my youth ministry days were over, and though I was very interested in the premise of Rooted, I was a poor seminary student so I declined the invitation. Fast forward to 2013, and I found myself in full time youth ministry and on the fast track to becoming an Anglican priest. I landed in a fairly large church, and though I had years of youth ministry experience, this was a totally new challenge for me. My Rector (Sr. Pastor) encouraged me to seek out a youth ministry conference, and the first place I looked was Rooted. In a world full of over-hyped, gimmicky, and entertainment-based conferences, Rooted was a breath of fresh air. I found myself surrounded by other Gospel-centered leaders with a passion for relationally based ministry. I had the chance to make new friends across denominational lines and to enjoy meaningful worship and fellowship with them. Most importantly I had the chance to learn and grow both from some amazing speakers and in smaller breakout sessions and discussion groups. I left from my time at Rooted feeling refreshed and nourished spiritually, and deeply encouraged in my own ministry to point young people to the grace and love of Jesus. No matter where you are in your ministry life, I cannot encourage you enough to join us in Chicago this October!
Rev. Matthew R. Wilkins | Associate Rector for Youth and Families
St. Peter's Anglican Church | Tallahassee, FL