Heart of the Child Conference comes to SWBTS March 6-7

One of the nation’s top conferences for preschool and children’s workers will be held at Southwestern Seminary in March when hundreds of leaders descend on the campus for the biennial Heart of the Child Conference.

The March 6-7 event in Fort Worth is geared toward those who work with children from birth to sixth grade, although sessions for family ministry have been added to this year’s event. A Korean language track also will be featured.

Between 500 and 800 workers and leaders are expected.

Karen Kennemur, SBTC children’s associate and Southwestern Seminary’s associate professor of children’s ministry, calls it “the best preschool and children’s family conference out there.” She’s been attending for about 15 years.

“It’s a great time to network with children’s ministers from all over the U.S.,” said Kennemur, who is serving on the conference’s leadership team.

The event will feature pre-conference and breakout sessions, as well as four keynote speakers:

David Thomas, a child and family counselor with 20-plus years of experience and the co-author of eight books, including Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys and Are My Kids on Track? The 12 Emotional, Social & Spiritual Milestones Your Child Needs to Reach.

Sissy Goff, a child and family counselor with 25-plus years of experience and the author or co-author of 11 books, including Raising Worry-Free Girls and Braver, Stronger, Smarter and Intentional Parenting: Autopilot Is for Planes.

Mark Jones, children’s pastor at Quail Springs Baptist Church in Oklahoma City and the founder of “Mr. Mark’s Classroom,” an online leadership development and teacher-resource company.

Adam Greenway, president of Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth and co-editor of The Great Commission Resurgence: Fulfilling God’s Mandate in Our Time.

The conference is jointly sponsored by LifeWay Christian Resources and three state conventions: the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma and the Arkansas Baptist State Convention.

Kennemur said financial underwriting by the three conventions and LifeWay has made the conference very affordable.

This year’s theme verse is Psalm 78:4: “We must not hide them from their children, but must tell a future generation the praises of the Lord, His might, and the wonderful works He has performed.”

Other speakers will include: Brian Housman, executive director of the 360 Family Conferences; Stephanie Chase, Kids Minister at Champion Forest Baptist Church in Houston; Larry Dan Melton, children’s pastor at Fielder Church in Arlington; Rob Tayne, discipleship pastor at MacArthur Boulevard Baptist Church in Irving; Jennifer Musgrove, lead kid keeper at The Village Church in Flower Mound; Bill Emeott, children’s minister at First Baptist in Houston; Carla Greenway, a speaker and the wife of Southwestern Seminary President Adam Greenway; Jana Magruder, director of LifeWay Kids; Delanee Williams, ministry specialist with LifeWay Kids; and Landry Holmes, manager of LifeWay Kids Ministry Publishing.

Learn more at HeartoftheChild.net.

TEXAN Correspondent
Michael Foust
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