02 September 2019
Thelma Commey was welcomed into her role as the new Youth President for the Methodist Church on Sunday, 1 September at Christ the Cornerstone Church in her home town of Milton Keynes. Attending were the President of the Methodist Conference, the Revd Dr Barbara Glasson, with the service led by the Revd Dawn Saunders.
Thelma was voted into her role at last year’s 3Generate, the Methodist Children and Youth Assembly, held in Southport. The role of Youth President is not only to be a figurehead for young people but to be their voice within the Methodist Church and beyond. The Youth President helps to shape Church policy, ensuring that the issues of concern to young Methodists are heard and actioned.
As Youth President, she will travel across the UK and overseas to talk to young people, listening to their concerns. Even before Sunday’s service, she had travelled to Japan to experience worship with Methodists there and had been to Gateshead visiting a foodbank and a football club that supports young refugees.
“My role is a lot about reaching out to young people, listening to their stories and testimonies, refining what they tell me and being a voice for thousands of young people I will be privileged to speak at events such as the Methodist Church Council and at the Methodist Conference.”
Each year the Youth President sets a theme and Thelma’s will be Jesus Loves All. Thelma commented: “I wanted something broad enough for me to work with that would be sustainable. The love of Christ is the underlying theme that underpins Christian faith for me.
“I want young people to know that they are loved, to share their story of God’s love and to love others with their actions. This theme allows me to encourage young people to explore and accept God’s love and to live it out in creative ways, reaching out to people who need it, often those who feel marginalised and excluded from the love of Christ.”
“We are already gearing up for this year’s 3Generate in November where young people discuss content for the manifestos and highlight those issues they want to bring to the attention of the Church. Last year the groups talked a lot about homelessness, a big issue around the country that the young people want to see the Church tackling.
“At this time of year many people are considering standing for the Youth President elections that take place at 3Generate. My advice to those who are thinking about standing is to do it. I have only been in the role a few weeks but it has been amazing.”
There is still time for a young person to put themselves forward to be considered for the Youth President 2020/2021 and to stand for the election at this year’s 3Generate. Further information can be found on the jobs pages of the Methodist Church website at https://methodist.current-vacancies.com.