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Lutheran youth and leaders set to invade Edmonton

June 8, 2010 No Comment

For more than 350 Lutheran youth, the summer of 2010 could have a major influence on their Christian faith. That’s the goal of the organizers of Lutheran Church–Canada’s triennial National Youth Gathering scheduled for Edmonton, July 2-6. With the theme belong&believe>>believe&belong the five-day event will focus on “how we belong in God’s family, in the church, in our families and among our friends,” explained Michael Gillingham, who is heading up the event. “We wanted to say clearly to the youth, ‘You belong to God!’”

National Youth Gathering planning committee

Volunteer organizing committee: (back l-r-) Deacon Michael Gillingham (Sherwood Park, Alta); Tony Marchand, (Kitchener, Ont.); Bill Wardekker (Winnipeg, Man.); Rev. Mark Danielson, (Fisherville, Ont.); (front l-r) Deacon Michelle Galliazzo (Burnaby, B.C.); Deacon Nicole Otterman (Stony Plain, Alta.)

The Gathering will develop the theme in plenary sessions, worship, music, breakout workshops, and by giving the youth and their leaders the opportunity to make an impact on the Edmonton community through serving events. As the theme develops, speakers address the reality of belief, doubt and feeling isolated, along with the joy that comes from being part of a Christian community.

Mr. Gillingham, who serves Bethel Lutheran Church in Sherwood Park, Alberta as director of Youth Ministry, explained that “many youth are surrounded by confusing spiritual messages. We felt it would be important to point the youth to a specific expression of the Biblical and historic Christian faith” in this case, the Lutheran confession.

Volunteers from across Canada plan the event and meet by phone for updates every few weeks and face-to-face four or five times during the two-year planning process.

This is the eighth youth gathering since LCC was formed in 1988. The event changes venue each time and draws participants from across the country.  The Edmonton gathering is centred on the campus of the University of Alberta, but will also use the facilities of Edmonton’s Concordia University College of Alberta, a post-secondary institution established by Lutheran Church–Canada and founded in 1921.

For more than a year the youth and their leaders have held fund-raising events in their congregations to help pay their way to Edmonton.

For more information go to www.lutheranyouth.ca

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