Friday, September 25, 2009

Youth workers are needed for National Youth Conference.

"Are you interested in volunteering at National Youth Conference 2010?" asks an invitation from the Church of the Brethren’s Youth and Young Adult Ministry. "Serving as a youth worker is a serious task," the invitation continues. "Youth workers are an essential part of the NYC staff, helping to carry out the programs and plans of the National Youth Cabinet as well as making sure that no details are missed."

Volunteer youth workers are expected to commit for the entire week of National Youth Conference, which is scheduled for July 17-22 in Fort Collins, Colo. Responsibilities include assisting the NYC coordinators, the National Youth Cabinet, and the director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry in required tasks for carrying out the conference.

"Youthworkers often miss sessions, meals, and sleep in order to get the job done, often meaning 10-12 hour days or longer," the invitation warned. "These responsibilities are not meant to scare you out of applying, but rather to emphasize the importance and responsibility of being a youth worker. We need committed, focused, and enthusiastic people to make NYC run smoothly."

Youth workers are expected to arrive on the campus of Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo., in the early afternoon of Friday, July 16, and to be present at the conference through the evening of Thursday, July 22. As compensation, registration fees will be waived (the fee covers lodging and meals) and travel expenses will be covered provided the Youth and Young Adult Ministry office books the airline tickets. Youth workers must have completed at least their second year of college. Adults of all ages are encouraged to apply as well.

Completed applications must be postmarked by Nov. 1 and final decisions will be made in early 2010. Go to to find the application online.

Source: 9/25/2009 Newsline Extra

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Workcamp Ministry announces schedule for 2010.

The Workcamp Ministry of the Church of the Brethren Youth and Young Adult Office has announced a theme and schedule for the workcamps that will be offered in the summer of 2010. The theme, "With glad and generous hearts," is taken from Acts 2:46. Online registration will open on Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. (Central) at

The Workcamp Ministry recorded a successful season this summer, with a total of 723 participants, 16 more than in 2008. "It is exciting and encouraging in this difficult economy, when many are struggling, that parents and congregations are making it a priority to send their youth on short-term service trips," said coordinator Jeanne Davies. "Workcamps give our youth an opportunity to put their faith into action, an experience that can be life-changing."

Twelve workcamps are planned for next summer, with a focus on junior high events because it is a National Youth Conference year. Following are dates and locations. The registration fee is $245 unless otherwise indicated:

Junior high workcamps are planned for Elgin, Ill., on June 16-20; Brooklyn, N.Y., on June 23-27; Indianapolis, Ind., on June 23-27; Ashland, Ohio, on June 28-July 2; Roanoke, Va., on July 28-Aug 1; Harrisburg, Pa., on Aug 2-6; and Richmond, Va., on Aug 3-7.

Senior high workcamps sponsored by the Brethren Revival Fellowship are planned for the Dominican Republic on June 20-27 ($695) and for Reynosa, Mexico, on July 31-Aug 7 ($595).

An intergenerational workcamp for ages 11 and up, co-led with On Earth Peace, will take place at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., on June 14-19 ($295).

A young adult workcamp will go to Haiti on May 23-30 ($695).

A "We Are Able" workcamp for intellectually disabled youth and young adults, and youth and young adult service partners, will be offered at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md., on June 28/29-July 2 ($350).

For more information go to or contact or 800-323-8039 ext. 286.

Source: 9/24/2009 Newsline

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Witkovsky Resigns

Matt Witkovsky has resigned as one of the co-coordinators of the 2010 National Youth Conference (NYC). He plans to continue in Brethren Volunteer Service on another assignment. Since he started in the position earlier this year, he has helped out at Christian Citizenship Seminar and with the workcamp ministry. He is a graduate of Elizabethtown (Pa.) College and was a member of the Church of the Brethren's Youth Peace Travel Team in 2006. NYC planning will move forward with co-coordinators Emily Laprade and Audrey Hollenberg, youth and young adult ministry director Becky Ullom, and the National Youth Cabinet.

Source: 9/9/2009 Newsline
World Council of Churches Interns

The World Council of Churches (WCC) will welcome five young people ages 18-30 to serve as interns in Geneva, Switzerland, from Feb. 2010-Jan. 2011. The interns will be assigned to one of the WCC working areas. Applicants must send, along with their application, background information about their church or Christian youth network that will help them in implementing their project. Closing date for receiving applications is Sept. 30. More information is at

Source: 9/9/2009 Newsline
Workcamp Photos

A photo album from the workcamps offered this summer by the Church of the Brethren's Youth and Young Adult Ministry is now available. Click here to find photos from a variety of workcamps for junior and senior high youth and advisors, young adults, and intergenerational groups. Above, former Youth and Young Adult director Chris Douglas joins senior highs at a workcamp in Putney, Vt., at the Place Apart intentional Christian community.

Source: 9/9/2009 Newsline
Junior High Conference exceeds seed grant in 'reverse offering.'

Junior high youth who took part in this year's National Junior High Conference have exceeded the seed money they were given for a "reverse offering" that has been collected since the June event. Reports on the collection has been issued by the Church of the Brethren's Youth and Young Adult Ministry.

In an update, youth and young adult ministry director Becky Ullom called the effort a "fantastic response from the junior high youth."

The worship planning team at the National Junior High Conference "wanted to have an offering experience that didn't put additional financial strain on families sending their youth to the conference," Ullom said. "Because the conference was focused on the theme of transformation, we decided a to try a reverse offering to benefit the ministries of the Church of the Brethren."

Each youth who attended the conference received $10, made possible through a $4,000 grant from the Church of the Brethren's Core Ministries Fund and the church's office of Stewardship and Donor Development.

"We encouraged the youth to consider how they might 'transform' the money into more," Ullom said. "If the youth were unsure of how to transform the money or didn't want to participate for some other reason, they could offer the money back immediately."

Staff returned from the conference with about $800 given during the event. Since then, many more donations have been received from junior high youth and youth groups, for a total of $6,277. Yet more donations are expected through the fall, Ullom said.

"I just wanted to share this great news with you," she wrote in her e-mail about the program. "What an example these youth and their advisors, families, and congregations are providing!"

Source: 9/9/2009 Newsline

Monday, September 07, 2009

National Youth Conference registration to begin Jan. 5.

Online registration for National Youth Conference (NYC) 2010 is scheduled to begin on Jan. 5, 2010, at 8 p.m. central time. NYC is an event for Church of the Brethren senior high youth that is offered every four years by the denomination’s Youth and Young Adult Ministry.

The 2010 NYC will take place July 17-22 on the campus of Colorado State University in Fort Collins, with the theme "More than Meets the Eye" (2 Corinthians 4:6-10 and 16-18).

NYC coordinators Audrey Hollenberg and Emily LaPrade, who are Brethren Volunteer Service workers, will assist Youth and Young Adult Ministry director Becky Ullom and the National Youth Cabinet in organizing the conference.

Cost of early registration for NYC is $425, increasing to $450 after Feb. 15. The registration fee includes lodging and meals. Registration will close on April 5, 2010. A deposit of $200 is due at time of registration, with the balance due by April 5. The money is nonrefundable. NYC t-shirts costing $15 each can be ordered at the time of registration.

Church of the Brethren musician and songwriter Shawn Kirchner has been commissioned to write the NYC Theme Song. A Speech Contest and a Music Contest are open to youth who will be attending NYC.

In the speech contest, youth are invited to submit speeches based on the NYC theme. Two youth will be chosen to speak in front of the conference during a worship service. "We need enthusiastic youth that will be able to inspire others with their words," said an invitation from the Youth and Young Adult Ministry. Entries must include a written and audio copy of the speech, which should be 500-700 words (about 10 minutes spoken).

During the same worship service, the winning song in the music contest will be played or the writer will participate in the performance of the song. Youth are invited to submit a song based on the NYC theme and written for use in worship. The winning song will be included in the conference book. Songs should be three-to-five minutes in length, and entries should include an audio recording on CD as well as a copy of the lyrics.

Submissions of speeches and songs are due by Jan. 1, 2010. Send entries to the NYC Office, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120. For more information go to

The Youth and Young Adult Ministry also has issued a call for volunteer youth workers to assist with the conference. "Youth workers are an essential part of the NYC staff, helping to carry out the programs and plans of the National Youth Cabinet as well as making sure that no details are missed," said the announcement. "We need committed, focused, and enthusiastic people to make NYC run smoothly."

Youth workers must be willing and ready to work long hours and commit to be present for the entire week of NYC. Families of youth workers are not permitted to accompany volunteers. Youth workers are expected to arrive in the early afternoon of July 16, the day before the conference begins, and to be available to work through the evening of July 22. The registration fee will be waived for youth workers, and travel expenses will be paid (provided the Youth and Young Adult Ministry books the airline tickets).

To apply for a youth worker position, complete an application form and mail it postmarked by Nov. 1. For an application form contact the NYC Office at 800-323-8039.

In related news, McPherson (Kan.) College is offering free overnight lodging and breakfast to NYC attendees either on the way to or on the way home from the conference. In exchange for this hospitality, the college is asking guests to take a one-hour tour. Contact Tom Hurst, director of Campus Ministries, at or 620-242-0503.