Exploration creates sacred space for young adults, ages 18-26, to be in meaningful fellowshippassionate worshiptheological reflection, and practical workshops as they discern whether God’s call on their life is to ordained ministry in The United Methodist Church and what faithful steps they can take in response.

Plans for an Exploration experience in 2024 are percolating as you read this.
We’ll share information here as those plans are finalized.

previous schedule


12pm – sacred space opens
3pm-5pm – small group leader training
3pm-6pm – registration
5pm-6:30pm – dinner with your annual conference
7pm-9pm – welcome and worship
9:15pm-10:15pm – small groups
10:30pm-12am – fellowship
12am – quiet hours and sacred space closes


6am-12am – sacred space opens
7am-8:30am – breakfast (on your own)
8:30am-10am – worship and plenary
10:15am-11:15am – small groups and UMCMA gathering
11:30am-12:45pm – workshop session 1
12:45pm-2pm – lunch and visit exhibitors
2pm-3:15pm – workshop session 2
3:15pm-3:45pm – break
3:45pm-5pm – workshop session 3
5pm-5:30pm – break
5:30pm-7pm – dinner
7pm-8:30pm – worship
8:45pm-10:15pm – small groups
10:30pm-12am – fellowship
12am – quiet hours and sacred space closes


7am-9:30am – breakfast with your small group
9:30am-11am – worship
11am – departure

previous workshops

Women in Leadership

The United Methodist Church is the only worldwide denomination that ordains women. Come learn about the ways in which women are empowered to live into their calls to lay and ordained ministry, and meet a panel of women active in ministry.

Mission and Social Justice

Is your call to ministry rooted in social justice? People of faith are called to transform the world, to ensure all people’s needs are met and to live into God’s promise of abundant life. Learn about some of the pathways the UMC has for young adults called to mission and justice work, including the Global Mission Fellows program, and internships with Church and Society.

Journaling Through Discernment

Though God calls us all but we each listen and discern differently. Join Dale Fredrickson in our Sacred Space for this workshop as he engages a brand new discernment resource – a journal that supports your discernment journey through art, poetry, scripture, writing, and guided thought.


Learn from a panel of elders and deacons as they share about how they live out their calls to ordination.

Extension Ministry: Serving Beyond the Local Church

What does it look like to serve as a clergyperson beyond the local church? Learn about how elders and deacons serve beyond the local church, including as campus ministers, military and medical chaplains, and with other organizations. This workshop also includes information about endorsement, an additional credential useful or required for certain extension ministry settings.

What to Expect in Seminary

Hear from seminary staff about what to expect in seminary and theological school, including areas of study, spiritual development, academic expectations, field/contextual education expectations, diversity and community.

Diversity in Ministry: Embracing Holistic, Inclusive Community

We are all shaped by our race and culture. Come to this workshop to learn how your identity and experiences impact the communities you are called to serve.


Deacons are ordained to Word, Service, Compassion and Justice. Learn how deacons serve within local churches and beyond the local church in a variety of settings, and how deacons serve differently than laity.

How to Pay For Seminary

Join us for a panel discussion led by seminary and theological school staff entrusted with helping students pay for graduate theological studies. Learn about options available for scholarships, denominational and other funding sources.

Lay Ministry in the UMC

Join us for a panel discussion about lay and ordained ministry, and the similarities and differences between both pathways. Learn about how we equip laity into ministry across the denomination.

Vocational Discernment Coordinators (and others)

This is a 3-workshop gathering for leaders serving in varying contexts helping students to listen, discern, and respond to God’s call to ministry. We’ll spend all 3 workshop sessions hearing about the work you’re doing, what trends you’ve noticed, what needs you discovered, and developing strategies for engaging young adults around call in meaningful ways. This workshop for adults will continue across all 3 workshop sessions.

previous exhibitors



other organizations