Early registration is still an hour away and networking has been in high gear. Last minute yesterday I connected with with Eric Echols of 12 Stones Church in Lawrenceville, GA about getting together for lunch. It turned out to be a great move. What a cool church and awesome ministry. For about 90 minutes I hung out in the 12 stones coffee shop with Eric, his creative director Rebecca and a Ruth, a Group Publishing consultant who was there to talk ministry. After a little while Matt McKee shows up and joins the conversation. I didn’t get to take a tour of 12 Stones, but I’m thinking about hanging out there on Sunday morning. They’re doing some pretty cools stuff with milestones in their Next Generation ministry and have a smokin’ hot parent brochure. I’m totally stealing it.

Afterward we all head to a little pub on the square of Lawrenceville and have some lunch. After an hour, everyone has to head out, but I hang around as Sam Luce pulls up with Andy, a children’s pastor at one of his church’s campuses and Michael Chanley. A few minutes after that Gina McClain pulls in from Tennessee along with her former co-worker Jessica. For another hour or so, we hang out, catch up and talk about the week and what lies ahead.

Don’t get me wrong. Orange is the best ministry conference I’ve attended that addresses kids and student ministry. However, this kind of stuff is what makes coming to Orange year after year so worth it. Meeting new people, connecting with them and beginning relationships. Looking forward to connecting with you this week, if you’re here that is. ūüôā