Youth

 

 

National Youth Gathering - 2015

 

Pastor Kris, Tanner McEwan, Andrea Herrman, Jill Thomas, and Kara Herrman attended the ELCA Youth Gathering in Detroit in July. The theme of the event was “Rise Up” with daily devotions and themes based on the Gospel of Mark. Those themes were: Bear Burdens, Build Bridges, Break Chains, and Bring Hope. 30,000 youth and chaperons spent their days in 3 rotations to Proclaim Community (at the interactive center), Justice (service day), and Story (with Mission Area youth).   Our youth spent their service day at a homeless shelter that serves families in Wayne County and is supported by Lutheran Social Services of Michigan. We painted hallways, trimmed trees, and did weeding and landscaping. In between, we shared lunch with some of the guests of the shelter.

Each night, all 30,000 gathered at Ford Field for amazing music and speakers. The highlight (for Pastor Kris anyway) was the salute to Motown music with a quartet of 2 Temptations, a Miracle, and a Capitol. They had the whole crowd on their feet dancing and singing along. Our speakers ranged from volunteers who have served as Young Adults in Global Mission, to a young entrepreneur who employs homeless people and gets them off the streets (making coats that function also as sleeping bags for the homeless,) to Marian Wright Edelman (founder of the Children’s Defense Fund.) Each night was a powerful and moving experience!

The ELCA was well-represented, and made a big difference in the city of Detroit by cleaning up communities and boarding up houses, working with community gardens and food banks, interacting with children at daycares, and a variety of events. They collectedover 500,000 diapers that were brought by youth groups around the country. They also collected over $400,000 for Walk for Water, to provide clean water in many parts of the world. In addition, there was a Sunday offering collected to help with many ministries in Detroit. The final numbers have not yet come out on that offering.


The 2018 Youth Gathering will be in neighboring Houston. We are looking forward to attending that event in our home state. The theme will be This Changes Everything!

For information on this event go to http://www.elca.org/gathering/

 

 

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