GenNext is our investment in the young lives of the next generation of The Gathering. Eleven years ago, we realized that The Gathering’s annual conference had grown into a three-generation event, and our hearts were moved to provide an excellent, meaningful, and outrageously fun experience for our children and grandchildren. Our hope is two-fold: for friendships that are forged within GenNext to carry and deepen year after year of participation, and for the virtues and Scriptures that are modeled at GenNext to reinforce the lessons already taught at home.
To provide the best activities and learning environments for our children at all stages of their lives, we offer four age groups, based on where our children are in school when they arrive in September.
G1 (3 years old through kindergarten)
G2 (1st through 5th grade)
G3 (6th through 8th grade)
G4 (9th through 12th grade)
The GenNext schedule perfectly complements the main Gathering schedule, allowing adults to attend their selected sessions and classes while also giving families some free time together. The GenNext schedule will be released a couple of months prior to the conference. Each year we strive to produce a balanced mix of experiences that are unique, thought-provoking, and outrageously fun for the students.
In past years, students have gone kayaking and snorkeling, taken cooking classes, and worked in teams to problem-solve their way out of “escape rooms.” We take care to provide age-appropriate activities. Counselors share their personal testimonies and teach from a Bible study. For the younger children: Sally Lloyd-Jones (author of The Jesus Storybook Bible) returns this year to read to our children. For our oldest: G4 participants will attend a few of The Gathering’s main sessions. We also invite some of our speakers to address the youth on various topics as well.
Our pool of counselors is drawn from a selective, 8-month leadership training program for young Christian adults, called The Forge. They are vetted, trained, experienced, and eager to pour into the lives of the students.
“We send our kids to GenNext for a number of reasons: They get discipled by cool, Godly college students, they get exposed to speakers and ideas that align with our value of generosity, and they have developed great friendships.”