Wednesday, March 15, 2006

National Youth Conference welcomes Superchick, Medema, Gunzel.

There are three additions to the line up of speakers and music leadership for National Youth Conference (NYC) in Fort Collins, Colo., July 22-27. The Christian band "Superchick" will be performing during Late Evening Activities on Sunday evening, July 23. Christian musician Ken Medema also will be sharing his talent with the Conference. However, Beatrice Biira will not be able to attend. In her place Beth Gunzel will be speaking.

"We are very excited to have Superchick on our schedule," said the NYC coordinating team of Cindy Laprade, Beth Rhodes, and Emily Tyler. "They're a great up and coming Christian band with songs already out on Christian radio."

Medema has performed at many past National Youth Conferences "and we are happy to have him return once again," the coordinators said. "He will be offering not only a Late Evening Concert, but also workshops and music leadership during a worship service."

Biira will not be able to attend because of problems with getting a visa to visit the US during the summer. Beth Gunzel has accepted the invitation to speak on the evening Biira was scheduled. A Church of the Brethren member working for the General Board's Global Mission Partnerships in the Dominican Republic, Gunzel will offer a unique perspective as a young adult working with an economic development program in the Caribbean island nation. Her work includes exploring "second-generation" business opportunities for communities in the DR. She also is working to increase the capacity of the Dominican Church of the Brethren to foster ownership and enable its successful operation of the program.

The current registration count for the conference stands at 3,133. Registration opened online on Jan. 1, and continues at The coordinators are hoping for a final registration of around 4,000 youth, advisors, volunteers, and staff.

Recently the worship coordinators and the National Youth Cabinet met to continue preparations for the conference. The coordinators also plan to travel to McPherson, Kan., to lead Regional Youth Conference at the end of March.

Special events at this year's NYC will include a "REGNUH" 5K walk/run to fight hunger, with proceeds going to the Global Food Crisis Fund, a ministry of the Church of the Brethren General Board (registration is $10, pledge sheets are available online); and the collection of Gift of the Heart School Kits at a Sunday evening offering (for information about collecting and packing items for the kits contact the NYC office or visit the website).

In preparation for the conference, the Church of the Brethren is being called to an "NYC Prayer Day" on June 25, to pray for those who will be traveling to Colorado for the event as well as to have an opportunity for congregations to commission youth and their advisors. Worship resources and commissioning ideas will be sent to pastors and NYC advisors and will be available online.

An "NYC Tithe Challenge" calls on congregations sending youth groups, and individuals who are planning to attend NYC, to give ten percent of their registration fees. This would come to $40 per person. The money will go to the Global Food Crisis Fund.

The worship coordinators also are looking for stories of Church of the Brethren youth to share during the NYC worship services. "Do you know youth who have felt empowered through faith and are doing something unique that is making a difference in the lives of others? Whose faith journey was positively impacted by the 2002 NYC?" asked the group. "If you know of a youth who fits these criteria, we would like to hear about them!" Responders are asked to first seek the youth's permission to tell their stories. Send both your contact information and the youth's contact information to Wendi Hutchinson at

To receives updates about National Youth Conference, join a list serve at

Source: 3/15/2006 Newsline

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