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Live with Amie

Over the past week, we have gotten to know Amie Latta, our Director of Program Development. In the weeks to come, we will get to know
various staff and volunteers over our social platforms. So if you’re not already, follow us on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter/Youtube
— whichever virtual community you find yourself in! — at YFC London.

Amie didn’t last three seconds in her online interview before she was breaking out in her famous laughter! James asked her gathered questions from our online community which she met with sassy wit, diplomatic caution and her ability to find common ground — as James noted, “She finds the solution that everyone wins, ‘cause that’s what we’re about here at YFC. Everyone’s a winner!”

The conversation moved on to the difficulties of moving our youth community to an online avenue. Trying to think outside of the box when it comes to programming, finding the virtual spaces students already are, connecting with youth we do know and engaging with ones
we don’t has been a challenge.  “Ministry looks vastly different, but the mission continues.”

Amie has been reflecting on how people can feel connected through virtual spaces but also feel so disconnected at the same time. So many of our students already feel alienated in their physical worlds and have found themselves at YFC because of that longing for connection. Staff are challenged and committed to continue relationship with these youth in a setting that for many is more uncomfortable. No longer can
conversation happen organically around a cup of coffee or a game of basketball. It now requires deeper intentional conversations, asking youth and young adults for greater vulnerability and authenticity.

James agreed, “It’s a pretty raw, open, trusting space. It’s hard to get people to enter there if they’re not used to this kind of engagement.” He of course then broke into song, paraphrasing Cindy Lauper – “We are living in a virtual world, and I am a virtual girl…”

When asked about what books she could recommend, Amie brought out two that have really inspired her. Now That I’m Called by Kristen Padilla

was a book Amie read when she was discerning whether she would enter ministry as a woman. It helped her work through her questions and finding her space. Better Together by Daniel Strickland is her current read. It looks at how men and women — the church as a collective — can work together to serve the community. Men and women compliment each other in their God-given gifts to work alongside each other. Amie makes a point of acknowledging others giftings — calling it out in them — and remembering that others have also affirmed and validated the gifts in her as she uses them.

Amie appreciates the role she is in to be an example for other young women of what it looks like to serve in ministry, knowing how she once felt boxed in as a woman. She remembers a female pastor she once had who challenged her in her fears of the unknown and whether
or not she’d do well in ministry. Her pastor encouraged Amie that she wouldn’t be happy if she didn’t go for it. It’s difficult when you don’t have someone who’s gone before you. There’s a struggle to want to do better, educate yourself more — feeling like you’re never good enough. Amie now recognises how important it is to first find your calling and qualifications in Christ; you already are enough. It’s exciting to now have students who want to serve and find themselves in this community, to be the one who gets to validate that God loves them and cares about their experiences.

James was reminded of Ephesians 2:10, For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. “It’s not about doing to be good enough; in Him, we’re already that masterpiece….”

They closed their conversation around the topic of knitting — which we have seen in Amie’s “Day in the life: quarantined” is a passion of hers. She’d enjoyed using thick yarn for a long time, but now she’s into sock weight yarn to make shawls and scarves — which is much lighter to carry around with her everywhere she goes! It’s become her creative hobby and something she can teach others to enjoy. There is now a virtual knitting club working on “granny squares” which will one day be joined to make a blanket when we can all be together again!

You can watch the full interview below.

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Post Author: James Coolidge