The Power of Disruption

I was in Nashville, TN, USA from September 20-26 for the meeting of our office, Young People’s Ministries. It was an awesome experience and helped me feel more connected with my colleagues and it put some better context to my work in the Philippines.

It was also energizing to be with young people from the United States and all over the world. Although, some of our African friends only joined us via Skype.

Yet, even if I had a great experience over all. When I got back to the Philippines on the evening of Sep 27th, I only had the 28th to rest. I had two speaking engagements on the 29th. It was a crazy Saturday for me.

And then came Sunday and Monday.

I. couldn’t. get. back. to. work.

And I wondered what was going on.


Continue reading “The Power of Disruption”

How Do We Support Homegrown Startup Companies?

Startups are often associated with technology enterprises. Thanks to the likes of Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Bill Gates, Paul Allen, and the rest of the technology entrepreneurs at Silicon Valley, startup companies gained momentum in the past three decades or so.

Recent startups that made it big include Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Mashable, Huffington Post and a couple of other Social Media websites.

How about in the Philippines? Do we have a startup culture?

Last night, I had a Twitter conversation with Peter Cauton, the blogger behind Here’s how the conversation went:

I also read Peter’s blogpost here: It left me with the question: How can we support homegrown startup companies?

In the first place, what is a startup?

Eric Ries, author of the Lean Startup, offers a Startup definition:

“A startup is a human institution designed to deliver a new product or service under conditions of extreme uncertainty.”

It means then that startup is pretty much the product of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs face uncertainties. Lots of uncertainties. Yet, that doesn’t deter them from pursuing their vision. They launch their startups anyway. Continue reading “How Do We Support Homegrown Startup Companies?”

DiscipleSHIFT Presentation Notes

If you’ve attended my session on DiscipleSHIFT at any Revive Conference, here’s my Powerpoint Presentation. The videos are also included in the presentation.

Please take note, though, that this presentation doesn’t make sense by itself. So you need to listen to me as I deliver it. If we can record a video of my presentation, I’ll upload it here at a later time.

What is Leadership: 18 Definition of Leadership from the Experts

I’ve been writing about leadership for more than two years now. And in all that time, I haven’t really explored the question “What is leadership?” I know that I’ve posted a lot of thoughts and experiences about leadership. But I haven’t really written anything extensive about the matter. In today’s post, I decided to write about this topic.

What is leadership?

A first glance at the term “leadership”, anybody would say that it refers to the act of leading. When you are leading, you need to have followers and you are moving towards a certain direction in pursuit of a certain goal.  Yet, leadership is not solely about position or the imposition of the leader’s will over his or her subordinates. It’s not easy to come up with a leadership definition. Instead, we need to look at what the experts have said and analyze them to better understand what leadership is.

To help us understand leadership better, I did a little bit of research and consulted some authors, leaders and writers about it. Below are 18 leadership quotes from the world’s leadership experts.

Leadership: Authority and Influence

“The only definition of a leader is someone who has followers.” – Peter Drucker

At its core, leadership assumes, of course, that you have followers. Why would people willingly follow you? It has something to do with leadership traits they found in you, or if they want what you are advocating. This statement from Peter Drucker probably applies best to charismatic leaders. These types of leaders are easy to follow—people could readily identify with the leader; they want to protect the leader and do his/her bidding.

Likewise leaders who hold leadership positions in organizations have an automatic following—the people who belongs to the organization has to follow him or her. They don’t need to like it, in fact some people will follow grudgingly and unwillingly.

Continue reading “What is Leadership: 18 Definition of Leadership from the Experts”

Recommended Subjects for First Year SCYD Students

Young people who attend SCYD are usually from 12 – 24 years old. A lot of them usually enter first year, but not everyone will complete the full three years. in most cases, less than 50% of the first year students will go through the second year, and only a handful about 2-20) students will complete the third year. The following breakdown will provide a description of the students of SCYD, as well as the subjects that they need to learn throughout the SCYD.

First year students

The average age of first year students are 12-16 years old.
They are in High School, and they come from different churches within each annual conference.
They are fairly active in the Youth Fellowship in their church and in the district.
They have usually attended the Christmas Institute, and other youth events.
They may have completed the confirmation class.
Since they are in their adolescence and early teenage years, they tend to be swayed easily by peer influence. Continue reading “Recommended Subjects for First Year SCYD Students”

Observations and Insights on UMC’s School for Christian Youth Development

In May 2010, I visited seven annual conferences that conducted the annual School for Christian Youth Development. I visited the following annual conferences:

VisayasPhilippinesAnnual Conference
Northeast LuzonPhilippinesAnnual Conference
Northern PhilippinesAnnual Conference
NorthEast PhilippinesAnnual Conference
Central LuzonPhilippinesAnnual Conference
PangasinanPhilippinesAnnual Conference
NorthWest PhilippinesAnnual Conference

Although I did not personally go to the Mindanao Philippines Annual Conference, I got in touch with the SCYD Director to ask about their SCYD curriculum and subjects.

The School for Christian Youth Development is an annual project of the Board of Discipleship of the annual conferences. In several annual conferences, it is the Council on Youth Ministries that implements this program. It is a three-year school meant for the development of Methodist youth so that they would be equipped for ministry in their respective local churches, districts and annual conferences.

The SCYD usually runs for two weeks. In several conferences, it is implemented for three weeks. Still, others do it for only a week! The students for each year level goes through around 6-7 subjects in a year. After attending the school for three years, the SCYD graduates will then be recognized by their annual conference as official youth lay speakers. This school is more than just a camp. It is a formal school being run by the church with classroom instructions, field work and extra-curricular activities for young people.

A number of pastors and deaconesses from all over thePhilippineshave decided to become full-time church ministry as a result of their exposure and training in the SCYD. The SCYD, however, is mainly implemented by annual conferences in theBaguioand Davao Episcopal Areas. Only two of the conferences in the Manila Episcopal Area do implement this program.

The School for Christian Youth Development is a three-year program implemented by the Board of Discipleship of the Annual Conference. It is meant to equip young people for ministries in the church. It usually lasts for two weeks during the Summer (April or May).

Curriculum and subjects.

The subjects being offered in the SCYD vary from one conference to another. There are similarities and overlaps. Most of the time, the curriculum has been established in the past several years and most of the present SCYD Directors do not even remember the last time they changed the curriculum.

The subjects could be categorized under 1) Bible; 2) Worship and Liturgy; 3) Methodism; 4) Ministry; 5) Outreach. The following table shows the different subjects as offered by different annual conferences. Some of these overlap with other year levels.

Continue reading “Observations and Insights on UMC’s School for Christian Youth Development”

Contemplating Young People’s Discipleship in the UMC

These past few weeks, I’ve had talks with a number of youth and young adult leaders and some pastors, too. The result of talking with a number of youth, young adults and church workers. It was nothing formal.I simply asked them about their insights into the ins and outs of the Church, particularly the way that young people’s ministries are being conducted. Here are some of the insights from my talks with a number of Methodists, both young and old. Continue reading “Contemplating Young People’s Discipleship in the UMC”