by Mike Spinelli, Perkiomenville congregation
It is not often that you get to bless someone as they enter a new ministry while knowing that they are staying around as part of your church family. At Perkiomenville Mennonite Church (Perk for short), we were able to do this as we blessed Scott and Heather Roth for a new ministry with Young Life in the Upper Perkiomen Valley.
Scott’s ministry in the Upper Perk Valley has taken many forms, from teen center and bike shop manager to thrift store director. He has also been the associate pastor for Perk for the last five years. Through it all, Scott’s heart for Upper Perk is well known, in the Valley as well as the church.
As a church, Perk has benefited from Scott’s unconventional approach to ministry. While we have some of the typical church programs for youth, Scott has also used his connections in Upper Perk to create on-going service projects. He also used an online platform to connect kids in deeper exploration of faith themes. But Scott felt there was a work he was called to outside of the “traditional church.”
Scott began to sense that God might be opening a new avenue of ministry; that avenue presented itself as Young Life. Young Life is a national ministry aimed at engaging teenagers with the good news of Jesus through weekly club meetings, Bible studies and camp. Young Life leaders first engage students in their own spaces—like clubs and sports—and invite them to join the weekly meetings when they are ready.
Scott worked with a group of volunteers to start the club portion of the program in the fall of 2017, but he began to feel he could be doing more. Through a season of prayer and discernment with family, friends, and other associates, Scott pursued becoming a full-time missionary with Young Life. His status with Young Life was confirmed in October of 2018.
On December 16, 2018, Perk Church used part of the morning worship service to affirm and bless Scott and Heather for their past ministry and the new venture. Different people of various ages spoke of Scott’s unique way of pushing their boundaries. Scott shared how much Perk Church has blessed his family and how they are glad to remain as part of the congregation. Together we celebrated Scott’s testing of our comfort zones and blessed them as a couple who were now stretching their own comfort with this new venture.
While Scott’s role at Perk has concluded, the Roths (including children Rowan and Ashlyn) will still call Perk their church home. Scott noted that he will soon be a youth parent as Rowan will transition into the youth group after this school year. The church is also part of his financial support team. Knowing Scott, the partnership of Young Life and Perk Church will soon extend to helping new students and families engage and enter God’s kingdom and find new life in Christ.