Rooted: A Conference for Asian Americans and All Others Weary and Worn

For those of us serving in an Asian Youth Ministry context, we know the unique challenges that come with the territory. We are expected as leaders to be perfect and put together, and to shy away from our weaknesses when we are not. We have both the expectations of those over us (supervisors, Senior Pastors, parents) and those under us (staff, volunteers, students) to be the unbreakable superhero: a functional Savior. As I’ve spent the last seven years navigating this line between Asian-American and immigrant Asian cultures in ministry, I’ve often found myself on the brink of burnout. As much as we might not want to admit it, our culture pushes us towards a ministry of performance and perfection. Jesus calls us to come and take up his easy yoke, and yet we feel the burden of another yoke placed upon us.

Rooted is a conference that seeks to minister to the Youth Worker, to refresh him or her in the grace of Christ, and to lay down the heavy yoke that has been placed upon us – whether on ourselves or by those around us. We need this reminder as Youth Pastors in the Asian-American church, that our worth does not rise and fall with our performance, but is secured in heaven through the blood of Christ. We need times to be vulnerable, to acknowledge our weakness, and to rest in the finished work of the Cross. I’ve found Rooted to be a haven amidst the busy, performance-driven culture that is so prevalent in the Asian church. In addition to encouraging Youth Workers in the Gospel, Rooted also seeks to apply the Gospel of grace in an Asian-specific context, through Asian-American workshops and panels.

Both we and our students need to look to the sufficiency of Christ, not our works, and we hope Rooted is a place where student leaders can be encouraged to do so.

Rooted 2016 kicks off in three short weeks in San Diego. Register TODAY!

Clark is the Associate Pastor at First Baptist Church SF, and has served in Youth Ministry in the Asian-American context for over a decade. He received his M.Div. from Talbot Theological School in Southern California, and is a Doctor of Missiology (D.Miss) candidate at Southern Seminary (SBTS). He is also an emeritus member of Rooted’s Steering Committee. He and his wife, Janet, have two daughters, Kara and Nora.

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