We are all YABs, Young Anabaptists!
This is to say that the term YABs refers to all young Anabaptists from MWC member churches. Though we have different faces, cultures, languages and ways of practicing our Anabaptist faith, all young people in the global Anabaptist family form part of YABs. What an extravagant gift.
Just like the commissions and other groups of MWC, YABs also has a committee, the YABs Committee.
This committee represents all of us young people before the MWC General Council and works with the MWC Executive Committee.
The YABs committee is made up of a representative from each continent and a mentor. The current committee consists of: Makadunyiswe Doublejoy Ngulube (Zimbabwe) for Africa; Ebenezer Mondez (Philippines) for Asia and the Pacific; Jantine Brouwer-Huisman (Netherlands) for Europe; Oscar Suárez (Colombia) Latin America; and Larissa Swartz (USA) for North America. Our mentor is Tigist Tesfaye (Ethiopia). This committee changes every six years after the Global Youth Summit.
The role of the continental representatives is to share the needs of young people in their continental regions with the YABs committee, and then to jointly discuss projects and themes related to young Anabaptists. The role of the mentor is to advise and monitor the work of the YABs committee.
From left: Ebenezer Mondez (Philippines), Tigist Tesfaye (Ethiopia), Larissa Swartz (USA), Makadunyiswe Doublejoy Ngulube (Zimbabwe), Oscar Suárez (Colombia), and Jantine Brouwer-Huisman (Netherlands).
The YABs network builds on the work of an earlier MWC youth committee called AMIGOS, which worked from 2004 to 2009 and planned a Global Youth Summit at the 2009 MWC Assembly in Paraguay. Based on this experience, a Youth Task Force was formed to develop a blueprint for the future. (See blueprint document.) The plan was formally adopted by the MWC Executive Committee in 2010 and the Youth Task Force was replaced by a Young Anabaptist (YABs) Committee with a representative from each of the five MWC continental regions.
This committee continues to work representing young people in MWC, facilitating connections and relationships among young people in the global church.