This blog is for all of the adults who accompanied young people to the 2012 ELCA Youth Gathering. Your commitment to the faith formation of teenagers deserves the admiration of our entire church! We know how hard you have worked these past couple years getting ready for the Gathering, and we have the deepest gratitude for your 24-hour-a-day sacrificial service to your group in hot, muggy, rainyNew Orleans. And we know that your work didn’t end when the bus pulled into your congregation’s parking lot.
Since I spend the majority of my day sitting at a computer or on the phone, and often go home with a sore neck or a toothache from clenching my jaw, I decided to treat myself to a weekly shoulder massage in these last weeks before the Gathering.
I wasn’t going to give time to the rumors that are flying around the church about two pastors who will speak at the Gathering because it gives those spreading such salacious information more press. However, I’ve had to write to enough people who have reached out to us wanting clarification that I thought it would be more efficient to post information to my blog.
Our little staff of three is doing our best to serve the almost 3,000 congregations registered for the Gathering. I worry that I set us up for the kind of pressure we live with. I am committed to a standard of service that makes everyone feel heard and valued.
If you drew a picture of the world as you hoped it would be, what would it look like? Deborah Storie drew a picture as part of a presentation she made at the Australian Missiology Conference inMelbourne,Australia, in 2005.
Matthew 25 is a familiar text to many of us, and because it is so familiar our brains might not fully comprehend its power to refocus our way of living in the world. On the Practice Discipleship day at the Gathering, young people will ponder what it really means to be a disciple, a follower of Jesus.