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Rise Up – Blogging the ELCA National Youth Gathering

July 13, 2015

This time tomorrow evening, I’ll be up in the air, headed with three high school youth from St. Peter’s and one other adult leader to join 30,000 of our closest friends from around the country (and world) in Detroit for the ELCA National Youth Gathering. Frankly, this has kind of snuck up on me. I haven’t been in charge of the details, planning, or fund raising – thanks be to God for a highly capable Director of Christian Education and Family Ministry! While I’ve been involved in our group sessions preparing for this event, my mind has been on the other tasks of congregational ministry. But with the event on the horizon, I’m filled with excitement and anticipation. This is fueled in part by memories of gatherings past. I travelled with my youth group to Dallas in 1991, where we were “Called to Freedom.” I went for the first time as an adult in 2003, travelling with the youth of First English, Appleton, WI, as we joined together under the theme “Ubuntu.” And in 2006 I was in San Antonio to celebrate “Cruzando.” So it’s been a while. And I am, to use the appropriate theological term, pumped.

Our theme this year is “Rise Up.” As Christian youth, and leaders, we are followers of the risen ones, called and sent to rise up with good news of Jesus Christ for the sake of the world. It will begin for us in Detroit. We will gather in worship, community, service, and Bible study to better understand God’s good news for this beloved world. We will learn to better understand the forces of oppression and injustice that keep God’s people from rising. We will seek to learn more about racism – within us, around us, and in the systems and structures of this world that seem so hard to change. In the wake of the Charleston shooting, not far from our home, this is particularly important. And, of course, we’ll spend some time just having fun and enjoying the goodness of life with which God has blessed us.

One of my personal commitments for our time in Detroit is to share my experiences for those back home through my blog. At the end of each day, I’ll try to put into words our experiences in Detroit. I hope you’ll follow along as we encounter Christ through one another and the residents of Detroit. So come along, and Rise Up with us!

From → NYG 2015

  1. Kathy Van Maren permalink

    Looking forward to sharing your journey. Found memories are flooding back from that trip to San Antonio! You have some very lucky young people to be sharing this trip along side you. Safe travels and Gods blessings to you all! Enjoy!

  2. William Shoup permalink

    Thanks you .

  3. Mary Hubert permalink

    Thanks it will be great to hear all about the trip! Blessings and safe travels!

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