LAUNCH Conference Highlights and Media

What does it look like to spend a weekend encouraging and equipping students and leaders to grab on fully to their calling — to launch Kingdom disciple-makers? Watch a the highlights video of Gateway NextGen’s LAUNCH Conference…


The LAUNCH Conference was a free 2-day event, hosted and paid for by the Gateway District. Why? Because we believe in the next generation. We need the next generation!

The event was hosted at the Adams 12 Conference Center in north Denver on October 28 and 29. Two hundred gathered to worship and pursue Jesus together and it was a memorable weekend as God moved deeply in the hearts of many that attended. We are still getting reports back from youth pastors and leaders, saying their students are ready to move into action because of what God spoke to their hearts this weekend.

Saturday afternoon, LAUNCH opened with an unconventional World Lunch experience. Guests were brought into our eating area and had been given the option of choosing three different color bands upon registration. The bands represented the number of people in first, second and third world countries. There was a group of about 12 seated at a table where a steak dinner had been prepared and laid out for them, ready to consume. The next group, had chairs, cups and plates, with tortillas, beens and rice. The last and largest group sat on the floor, with a bucket of water, some tortillas and white rice — no utensils, plates or cups were offered. The experience was uncomfortable and eye-opening for many and the conversations afterwards prompted many to give to the Foursquare Disaster Relief effort, Project Nourish, to help stop starvation in East Africa.

Several next step opportunities were presented to students in our Exhibit Hall, including reps from Life Bible College, Ignite, Echo School of Ministry, Solid Rock Outdoor Ministries, Rocky Mountain Youth Alive, Joshua and Diana Boling with Foursquare Missions International, and SHIFT Awareness to Action: Students Fighting Sex Trafficking.

Special guests and student quick talks featured topics such as bi-vocational ministry, becoming missionaries to our school campuses, sexual addiction and pornography (The Novus Project), and testimonies from those who are stepping out and making a difference by following God’s lead in their lives.

Our Featured Guest Speaker, Kimberly Dirmann, spoke about the life of David, releasing fear in our lives (which was also a theme for our night of worship) and being empowered by the Holy Spirit to do what God calls us to do! Gateway NextGen Rep, Shawn M. Shoup, also shared about David, the shepherd boy called to be king, who God used to release a “song” that shaped a nation. We’ve all got a song to sing and the time to release it is now!

Sunday morning brought an unexpected surprise when we learned that our contracted venue failed to schedule anyone to be in the building for the day. We quickly switched gears, hosting all of the morning activities and sessions outside, and the question we asked of the day was simply, “What is God trying to teach us?” God moved in our hearts and spoke a deep sense of calling and mission, no matter the circumstance.


Because our second day was moved outside, we missed the opportunity to share several media pieces that were prepared for the weekend. Check these out. Feel free to download and use any of these elements to follow-up and debrief with your students and leaders.

Bumper Videos and Interviews

“You’ve Got a Song to Sing” Media

Our Gateway NextGen Rep, shared a message where he argued that we are all created to be creatives. We’ve all got a “Song to Sing”! In it, he referenced the TED Talk from Bobby McFerrin at the 2009 World Science Festival. Here it is…

Shawn was going to also have some fun with what soundtrack plays in his head when he thinks about David taking down Goliath…

Extended Director’s Cut Highlights Video

Here is a longer, extended cut video from the weekend. It’s hard to believe that it all happened in a 24-hour period!

Special Presentation to Pastor David Van Hoesen

Carrie Van Hoesen partnered with Shawn Shoup and an anonymous donor to surprise Carrie’s husband and Co-Youth Pastor, David Van Hoesen, with a new-to-them car on Sunday morning at the event! Watch how it went down on Facebook video (captured by NorthRock youth volunteer, Richard Solano) here.

Here’s a couple pics of the ECHO students with the car before presenting it to the Van Hoesen’s…


David got to drive it home from the event — a 6-hour drive back to Bayfield, CO.

LPC Rep Freestyle Rap

Who can forget this classic moment when Luke Kosmas offered to freestyle rap on Sunday morning?


  • If you missed LAUNCH and/or the Leader’s Break-outs at LAUNCH, you might have missed this hand-out with important information from our NextGen Rep. Download it here [PDF].
  • Also, we would really appreciate it if you could help us get a response from the QR code Student Survey that we shared with students at the event. Please set aside some time this week to ask your students to respond to this super-quick 4-question survey. Here’s a direct link:

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