PBS 2017: youth takes centre stage


The 2017 Pastors’ Book Set conference (PBS) is still in the early planning stage but, as Pete Ong explained, its emphasis will be different from previous years

The Pastors’ Book Set Conference is a regular inclusion on the SIM Malawi calendar but this year’s event will be different from those held in the recent past. In 2010 the focus was on Christian marriage and family, while in 2012, 2013 and 2015 PBS focused on mission. This year youth and youth work will be centre stage. The event is still in the early planning stage but already there is excitement building.

“The demographic make-up of Malawi shows that around 70 per cent of the population is under 25 but, certainly in the Malawian Church, its voice is not often heard clearly,” said Pete Ong, SIM Malawi’s Youth Ministry Co-ordinator.

“We want the next PBS, which will be held in Blantyre (and possibly a repeat next year in Lilongwe) to start to give youth a voice in the Church and in the nation.”

Malawian and overseas speakers

This year’s event will run from Monday 11 to Friday 15 September inclusive and will be aimed at youth pastors and youth leaders from the Malawian Church. The hope is that it will include a wide range of Malawian and overseas speakers, dealing with a number of youth-related specialisms. Speakers’ areas of expertise will include engaging with and empowering youth, student ministry and reaching students, and creative outreach to youth, to name but three.

But why the change of emphasis after several very popular and successful events on mission?

“Firstly, it was always our intent to have different subjects/themes for the conferences, and  ‘Reaching Children and Youth’ is one of SIM Malawi’s key Priority Areas for work,” said Pete.

Prayer Points

Please pray for

1. Logistics: finalising a venue, finalising the speakers and for the safe delivery of the book sets from Kenya

2. The right people to attend and to use the books to help develop their understanding of youth ministry when they leave the conference

Numerically smaller event

“We have been thinking about having a PBS devoted to youth for a while, and now seems to be the right time to go ahead with it. It will be a smaller event than those in the past, we think around 150 delegates at each conference, but the calibre of speakers we hope to attract will make it a very dynamic event.”

The actual book sets themselves will be coming from the organisers of SIM’s successful ‘Youth Toolkit Conference’ in Kenya. Each set will be made up of 40 books, and Pete hopes the delegates will see each of the authors as their personal mentor in youth work.

Further details about the event will be published in Malawi Amoto and on SIM Malawi social media platforms as they become available. In the meantime, Pete has asked for people to start praying for the event as it takes shape.


Rapt attention from delegates at a previous PBS conference


PBS is supported by SIM Malawi project MW96558 Pastors’ Book Set Conference

Youth work is supported by SIM Malawi project MW96658 Youth Ministry Capacity Building