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Spreading the light of God’s love

July 6, 2010 No Comment

Monday’s servant events followed by an evening spent enjoying the water and rides at West Edmonton Mall left the youth and leaders attending the final session of Lutheran Church–Canada’s National Youth Gathering weary yet not looking forward to the end of the experience.

The gathering received final words of encouragement from speakers Lynn Gergens, Rev. Sye VanMaanen, Joel Haberstock and drama team These Guys.
Pastor Sye reminded them they don’t belong to the world, they belong to Jesus and therefore belong to each other as members of the body of Christ. Using the Bible story of the man born blind whom Jesus healed, Ms. Gergens encouraged everyone to “see people the way Jesus sees them” as those in need of His love and forgiveness. Finally, Joel Haberstock told how important it is to keep connected to the church. Following the presentations, the speakers received a standing ovation.

The gathering closed with a worship service led by Pastors Jan Pastucha, Richard Juritsch and Brian Faulkenholt. “Don’t be a camouflaged Christian,” Pastor Mark Danielson (Trinity, Fisherville, Ont.) the gathering’s chaplain said in his sermon. He told the youth that his prayer was for them to be “Christians who make a difference in the world.”

To help remind everyone at the gathering that they are the light of the world, each person received a battery-operated tea candle from one of the pastors accompanied by a blessing. As the candles were turned on, the overhead lights slowly dimmed. Eventually the auditorium glowed with the warm glow from the candles as everyone sang “Forth in the Name of Jesus.”

Tears and hugs marked many departures as new friends pledged to keep in touch. The next gathering is currently scheduled for LCC’s Central District in 2013.

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