Imagery of Regent people and campus

YWAM Founder Addresses Regent and CBN Community

By Sarah H. Dolan | November 17, 2009

Loren Cunningham introduces two YWAM students, Morgan and Meghan, who are leading a campaign to fight sex-trafficking in America.

The motto of Youth with a Mission (YWAM), "To know God and make Him known," may sound simple, but according to founder Loren Cunningham, it is comprehensive and has a far reach. On November 16, Cunningham spoke to the Regent University/CBN community about the organization and its role in today's society.

"We are in the most exciting times now," Cunningham said. "It is a time where our youth, this generation, want to be part of what is happening in a changing world." He remarked that about 95 percent of YWAM workers are youth.

YWAM is an ever-expanding global "movement of ministry organizations," born in 1960, which has reached into every nation. Cunningham is also the founder and president of the University of the Nations, YWAM's global university, which was founded the same year as Regent University, 1978.

"Currently we operate in 177 nations, have four million part-time and 20,000 full-time workers," Cunningham said. He explained that although a large number of YWAM students train as front-line missionaries in foreign nations, there are also bases in America that train students to minister locally through areas such as the media, the arts and a variety of practical vocations.

"My son David approached me when he was 12 years old about his desire to make movies in Hollywood," Cunningham said. "He let me know that he is in the seventh generation of preachers, but was ready to minister through the more nontraditional pulpit of the media."

While David's transition from traditional ministry to Hollywood came as a surprise to his father, it also was a reminder of the importance of "nontraditional" ministry in the United States.

"The key to understanding evangelism is not through the use of authority, but influence," Cunningham said. "Influence the world around you by modeling your faith."

Cunningham shared how in September 2009, 26 YWAM students in southwestern Nigeria were able to minister to militants through practical service and prayer in the surrounding community. The world was caught by surprise as the militants laid down their arms in unprecedented numbers. The YWAM students testify that those who were ministered to learned the sincerity of love through the service of others.

"A change came from 26 young people who were willing to lay down their lives on the line for love, prayer and to serve," said Cunningham. "With that kind of commitment, we can see a significant amount of change. God has raised Regent and CBN to touch the world. Be world changers, but when you get there don't change your purpose...always do it for God."


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