History

Discovery was started as a vision. In 1996, Rev. Melody Traylor seved as associate pastor at First United Methodist of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. She heard God tell her to “Create a junior high weekend in the local church similar to Chrysalis (a spiritual formation weekend).”

In 1998, Tuscaloosa First held the first Discovery weekend for youth. The youth and the adults who participated in the initial weekend were instrumental in helping to create four weekend formats for middle school years: Discover God’s Love through the Church, Discover God’s Love through Scripture, Discover God’s Gifts: Prayer, Baptism and Holy Communion and Discovery: Celebrate Life.

Since then, more than 400 Discovery weekends have been held in 120 local churches in 20 states and three countries, with more than 30,000 attendees. We have celebrated more than 200 baptisms and countless reaffirmations of faith. In addition, Discovery Ministries is…

  • the only local church-based mid-high spiritual formation weekend
  • a leader in training senior high students to lead others to a deeper relationship with Christ
  • the second largest in church attendance in worship (Easter is the largest)
  • the largest attended youth event in each church holding the weekend
  • yoked with Confirmation in the local church

Discovery is endorsed by The Upper Room, The United Methodist Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama.  We are an ecumenical ministry with a vision to help churches lead youth to a deeper level of God’ love.