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Looking for young world-changers

Two young adults--Asti White and Emily Burns--who served in Kalamazoo as US-2s.

The US-2 track is accepting applications through November 30. If you are a young person, 20-30 years old, consider becoming a part of this program that has changed the world for 70 years.

The Global Mission Fellows program of The United Methodist Church places young adults, ages 20–30, in social justice ministries for two years of service. The program offers the opportunity for service in the United States (US-2 track) and around the world (international track).

The application for the 2021-23 cohort of Global Mission Fellows on the US-2 track opened Monday, Oct. 12. The application for the Global Mission Fellows international track will be released at a later time, pending travel restrictions related to COVID-19.

Michael Bennett, young adult missionary

The program allows participants to connect the church in mission while addressing the root causes of oppression and alleviating human suffering in their host communities. Fellows work alongside community organizations in various areas, including public health, migration/immigration, education, and poverty.

The Global Mission Fellows program is open to those from different denominational backgrounds. Still, participants must be willing to represent The United Methodist Church and uphold its social principles during their time of service. The Wesleyan value of personal and social holiness is at the core of the program.

At the present time, there are five US-2s serving in Michigan: Michael Bennett (Resident Director Wesley Foundation in Kalamazoo), Kathryn Sappington (Justice Outreach Advocate at Kalamazoo 1st UMC), Emily Palm (Case Worker with NOAH Project in Detroit), Lauren Norton (Outreach Coordinator for Motown Mission), and Yeo Jin Yun (Coordinator of Development and Communication for Methodist Federation for Social Action, headquartered in Detroit). A young woman from Port Huron, MI, Shiree Fetterly, is in Tampa Bay, FL, working as a Community Organizer with the Seminal Heights UMC.

The United Methodist Church has been sending young adults to serve in short-term mission for almost 70 years. In the wake of World War II, programs were established to address global issues. An “Us too” appeal for young adults to invest in the healing of the United States emerged as well. The Women’s Division of the Methodist Board of Missions launched the US-2 program in 1951. As the program grew, it came under the oversight of Global Ministries and invited young men and women to serve. Today, over one hundred Global Mission Fellows are serving in the United States and countries worldwide.

The fall application deadline is Nov. 30, 2020, and the spring application deadline is Feb. 24, 2021. Placement matches will be assigned throughout the selection process, so early application is encouraged. The application can be found at https://www.umcmission.org/serve-with-us/global-mission-fellows/become-a-global-mission-fellows.

Those selected for the next Global Mission Fellow US-2 cohort will begin training and service in August and September 2021.

The Rev. Lisa Batten, Coordinator of Young Adult Initiatives for The Michigan Conference, is the Affiliate Coordinator for Global Mission Fellows in the state.