Saturday, September 30, 2006

Youth Peace Travel Team

This is an invitation to encourage young adults (ages 18-22) to apply for the 2007 Youth Peace Travel Team (YPTT).

The YPTT (a joint project of the General Board, Outdoor Ministries and On Earth Peace) travels to Brethren camps and to Annual Conference. They lead workshops, games, songs, worship, and Bible study which encourage campers to think about Christian living in the context of peace and social justice. We are looking for dynamic leaders, ages 18-22, who are interested in a summer of outdoor ministry.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Susanna Farahat.

Susanna Farahat
coordinator for peace education
On Earth Peace
500 Main St.
P.O. Box 188
New Windsor, MD 21776

Friday, September 29, 2006

Coming and Seeing at NYC

The National Youth Conference (NYC) trip to Colorado began early on July 21, in the Church parking lots at Naperville and Peoria. The two buses converged at Dixon, picking up the rest of the Illinois/Wisconsin District group, and the journey was on.

107 senior high youth and advisors registered for the district bus trip (including nine Pennsylvanians that rode with us). Other district members traveled by other means to serve on staff at NYC. Sixteen congregations were represented.

On the way buses stopped in Omaha, Neb. The evening included a vespers service in a large ditch next to our motel. An early start the next morning took us across the long stretch of Nebraska. We stopped for lunch in Ogalalla before cruising on to Fort Collins for the main event at Colorado State University.

What an event it was! Twice-daily high-octane worship services, workshops, small groups, service projects, hiking, concerts, and much more filled the schedule. A group from the district entered an ultimate Frisbee team in the NYC tournament. "Ultimate Illinois" reached the championship game before losing in overtime.

Speaker after speaker challenged the 3,600-plus NYC participants to follow Jesus' invitation to "Come and See," the theme for the week. Many placed an emphasis on connecting our faith in Christ to serving the needs of the world by relieving hunger, working for justice, and volunteering our time. Almost $90,000 was raised through a run/walk and other events at NYC. More money has been coming in since then.

The buses on the trip home stopped at McPherson College in Kansas and made a construction detour in Iowa before arriving back in Illinois, returning home after an incredible week.

By now congregations are feeling the repercussions of the uplifting and inspiring week the group experienced at NYC. The prayer now is that our youth with continue to encounter the Jesus they "came and saw" at NYC in the people, the worship, and the activities of our district. ---Walt Wiltschek

Source: October 2006 IL/WI District Newsletter
A Red Headed Paster and NYC

Eight youth and three adults boarded an early morning bus for Fort. Collins, Colorado. Their destination: National Youth Conference. They were excited, and a little sleepy anticipating what lay ahead the next few days.

NYC exceeded their expectations and they were inspired to be a moving force in the Peoria Congregation when they got back. On the bus on the way home, Pastor Dana McNeil challenged the youth to bring their individual testimonies to the congregation and then prepare a Sunday service based on their experiences. The youth agreed, with a commitment from the Pastor as well. If the youth accepted the challenge the Pastor would allow the youth to dye his hair RED.

Sunday morning, August 20th, a Red Headed Pastor and 8 youth entered a Sanctuary that had been turned into a Construction Site. Yellow construction tape, ladders, a big screen and 8 hard hatted youth began the service entitled, Who are you becoming. The theme said our youth are Christians "under construction" and are active members of our Congregation who contribute to the total energy of the group. And energy they provided for a fantastic Worship Service. They encouraged the rest of the congregation to "Come and See" what they saw at NYC.

Source: October 2006 IL/WI District Newsletter