Young leader summit promises high-caliber training, relevant discussions

By NAMB Staff

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – Young leaders and pastors will gather May 13-14, for a national summit aimed at developing them and spurring conversations on the topics most relevant to them.

The SBC’s Leadership Pipeline – launched in early 2021 – will host its first in-person event at First Baptist Church Cleveland, Tenn., presented by the North American Mission Board (NAMB).

The event will be free to the first 500 leaders who register. Participants can expect the opportunity for fellowship and will hear messages from fellow pastors and leaders and discuss issues affecting the future of the church.

Featured guests will include H.B. Charles Jr., pastor-teacher at Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla.; J.D. Greear, pastor of The Summit Church in Durham, N.C.; and Noe Garcia, head pastor of North Phoenix Baptist Church in Phoenix; among several others.

Leadership Pipeline is focused on engaging young pastors and leaders in the life of the Southern Baptist Convention. The goal is to encourage wider involvement as young leaders begin stepping into influential roles in the SBC.

“The upcoming NAMB Pipeline Young Leader Summit is designed to meet pastors and young leaders exactly where they are – today,” said Jordan Easley, pastor of First Baptist Church Cleveland and a leading catalyst for the Leadership Pipeline. “The focus of this gathering is going to be on becoming better, together.”

Shane & Shane will lead worship, and Easley said the plan will be for presenters to deliver compelling, 15-minute talks before transitioning to vibrant panel discussions on each subject.

“I’m personally excited about these panel discussions because I have so much respect for the people that are going to be involved,” Easley said. “I’m also looking forward to seeing what the attendees will have to say; they will be crucial contributors to those discussions.”

The last few years of ministry have been increasingly difficult for pastors. Barna reported late last year that nearly 40 percent of pastors considered quitting within the last 12 months. Perhaps the most alarming statistic of the Barna study is that, of pastors under the age of 45, roughly 46 percent said they were considering quitting full-time ministry.

“After walking through such a challenging season of life and ministry over these past couple of years, I’m hoping this multi-day event will be a much-needed gift for our young pastors and leaders,” Easley said.

The Pipeline initially launched as a project facilitated by the SBC’s Executive Committee before recently transitioning to NAMB, given the entity’s ministry assignment from the SBC to provide leadership development for Southern Baptists.

For a list of featured guests, topics and to register for the event, visit

Published May 11, 2022