Announcing the 2021 ELCA Youth Gathering

June 29-July 3, 2021 / Minneapolis, MN

14 I kneel in prayer to the Father. 15 All beings in heaven and on earth receive their life from [God]. 16 God is wonderful and glorious. I pray that [God’s] Spirit will make you become strong followers 17 and that Christ will live in your hearts because of your faith. Stand firm and be deeply rooted in [God’s] love. 18 I pray that you and all of God’s people will understand what is called wide or long or high or deep. 19 I want you to know all about Christ’s love, although it is too wonderful to be measured. Then your lives will be filled with all that God is. 20-21 I pray that Christ Jesus and the church will forever bring praise to God. [God’s] power at work in us can do far more than we dare ask or imagine. Amen. (Ephesians 3:14-21 CEV)

About the theme: We are bound. Bound by our sin, by the expectations of others, by poverty, by ”-isms” that try to divide us, and by so much more. In a life that often feels like it has young people in a suffocating grip, we want them to imagine the boundlessness of God: boundless love, boundless mercy, boundless freedom, boundless creation, boundless strength. All offered from a gracious and loving God who knows and adores them. All so abundant and endless it cannot be measured. What are the stories of God’s people, both in scripture and modern-day that share the awe and wonder of just how vast our God is? What does it mean, what does it look and feel like to live a life “filled with all that God is”? How can young people find themselves within the boundlessness of Christ’s love?

MYLE, the tAble, and the Gathering are unique opportunities to invite young people into a deeper relationship with a God whose possibilities are boundless. Through one of a kind experiences, this ministry stretches and affirms young people’s gifts and calls. They experience the power of the Spirit within them, that frees them to live in the grace of God’s boundless love in Jesus Christ.

Finally, we are excited by the connections this theme offers to our host city of Minneapolis and the surrounding area. Known as the “City by Nature”, Minneapolis is an earth-minded city in many ways. The Minneapolis Area Synod also names advocacy around care for creation as a top priority, which would allow us to learn from and support the local expression of the church.

Learn more: www.elca.org/gathering and on our synod’s YG page: https://scsw-elca.org/elcayg2021/

Mission Moment: Young Adults in Global Mission

Each week we share a mission moment. Why do we call them mission moments? In short, because every time you put money in the offering plate at your congregation, you are supporting these missions of the wider church through the money that your congregation sends on to the synod in the form of MISSION SUPPORT. Some call this benevolence. The ELCA encourages us to refer to this in a more meaningful way by calling it Mission Support. YOU are supporting the missions of the ELCA at all three expressions…your congregation, your synod and churchwide and we THANK YOU for your offerings. This mission moment shows how you are helping to raise up leaders through Young Adults in Global Mission (YAGM) through ELCA HUNGER FELLOWSHIPS. A short video has been created about their experiences, and here also in writing is a reflection from one of those in our midst who ends her fellowship with LOPPW on August 12, Kelsey Johnson.

Many of us have had the pleasure of walking with (or sometimes running with!) Kelsey Johnson, Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin Hunger Fellow and member of Midvale Lutheran Church. You may have seen her leading workshops at LEAD & Synod Assembly, addressing the Senate Committee hearing for the Human Trafficking bill, at the Immigration, Asylum & Our Response Forum, at the movie conversation, “Emanuel” and in the synod office to name a few. Kelsey has worked in the LOPPW office under the direction and guidance of LOPPW Director, Rev. Cindy Crane.

She writes, “I’m excited to share this short video about the ELCA hunger advocacy fellowship I’ve had the privilege of experiencing in the context of Wisconsin for the last year. The fellowship has been challenging, life-giving, invaluable, and has shaped my growth trajectory in profound ways. Thank you to the Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin, the ELCA Advocacy state public policy network, and ELCA world hunger for empowering my voice and gifting me the experience to develop as a leader and advocate. Thank you to the 6 synods I’ve worked alongside in Wisconsin. I look forward to continuing these relationships as I continue candidacy for the next four years through the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin.

Also, a special thank you to the young adults/not so young adults I’ve served alongside this year. These have been and continue being transformative relationships and experiences I’m so deeply grateful to carry.”

Note: Kelsey Johnson is at the very end of the video:

ELCA Hunger Advocacy Fellows 2018-19

The summer #heat can be felt nation-wide, and so can contributions of Hunger Advocacy Fellows at 6 sites around the U.S. thanks to ELCA World Hunger in 2018-19. Peek into their roles & share the encouragement of their advocacy that moves us toward a just world & end to hunger.

Posted by ELCA Advocacy on Monday, July 22, 2019

https://www.facebook.com/elcaadvocacy/videos/561152794289517/

To learn more, also visit: www.elca.org/careers

SCSW Children, Youth & Family Ministry Network Meetings

Please join us for the next Children, Youth and Family Network Meeting,
Thursday April 25th  10:30am-12pm. We meet to support, dream and vision together.

Location:  Upperhouse  365 E Campus Mall #200, Madison, WI 53715

(There is a parking garage directly under the building)

Typically our meetings are the 4th Thursday of each month at Upperhouse in Madison. We also use Zoom for those that cannot join us in person. We would love to see you there!  Contact us if you want to Zoom into the meeting!

Future Meeting Date:
May 23 – at Upperhouse 10:30am -12 noon

Contact:
Jay Kiel
Director of Youth Ministry
St. Luke’s Lutheran Church
Middleton, WI   Edgerton, WI
jkiel@stlukes-elca.org

or

Heather Greenley
Youth Coordinator
Central Lutheran Church
youth_clc@yahoo.com

Restore: Synod Youth Leaders Retreat

Calling all those who work with children, youth, and family ministries! Are you a pastor, staff member, lay leader, or volunteer that works with faith formation?  Join us as we learn, dream, and worship together February 11th-13th at Bethel Horizons. We’ll be joined by Deacon Tammy Devine, a spiritual coach and systemic whole person promoter of well-being. “Restore” will be an opportunity to connect with those doing similar work to you in our synod, reflect on how God is calling you in your ministry, and gain tools and resources to bring holistic, spiritual wellness into your faith life. There are three payment levels ($30, $70, $85) based on the funding you have available to you. We are looking forward to gathering together as we listen for how God is calling us in our own faith journeys and how that shows up in our vocational roles in ministry.

Register online at: https://goo.gl/forms/FDWN6tKrOjyMJxIi2

Find out more details on the main event page at : https://scsw-elca.org/event/scswrestore/

Schedule

Monday, February 11th

2:00 pm – Registration
3:00 pm – Gathering and introductions
4:00 pm – Restore: Session #1 w/ Tammy Devine
5:30 pm – Dinner
6:30 pm – Restore: Session #2 w/ Tammy Devine
7:30 pm – Break
8:00 pm – Worship
8:45 pm – Fellowship

Tuesday, February 12th

8:30 am – Breakfast
9:30 am – Morning Devotion
9:45 am – Restore: Session #3 w/ Tammy Devine
11:30 am – Break
Noon – Lunch
1:00 pm – Restore: Session #4 w/ Tammy Devine
2:00 pm – Sabbath Time
5:30 pm – Dinner
6:30 pm – Restore: Session #5 w/ Tammy Devine
7:15 pm – Worship
8:30 pm – Trivia and Fellowship

Wednesday, February 13th

9:15 am – Breakfast
10:00 am – Worship

The Youth & Family Ministry Network of the SCSW Will Gather!

This Thursday, October 25, 2018
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Location: Synod Office – 6401 Odana Rd, Suite 20 Madison OR online via Zoom.
To join via Zoom from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://wartburgseminary.zoom.us/j/795356823
Or Telephone:
Dial: US: +1 669 900 6833 or +1 646 558 8656 Meeting ID: 795 356 823

All volunteers, lay staff, and rostered ministers who work within the realm of youth and family ministry are invited to join us as we network together and brainstorm how we may engage the youth of our synod over the next year. This will be an important gathering as we listen to each other, our experiences, our challenges, and our hopes for the future. Join with other youth leaders for this time of visioning and getting acquainted with one another.

Also, be sure to join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/scswyouth/.

Telling the Story of the 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering

Look back on your gathering experience! There are tons of pictures and videos to help you share the Gathering story! Check out the albums on the official Facebook page, as well as videos available on YouTube.

2018 ELCA Youth Gathering New Resources

We are excited to share the latest in our curriculum resources that explore the theme “This Changes Everything.” In partnership with LuMin: Campus Ministry Network and the Lutheran Outdoor Ministries Network, we have created three cross generational sessions and three sessions to be used in young adult ministry contexts. Each curriculum seeks to continue conversations started this summer at the Gathering, at camps and in congregations about God’s grace, love and hope changing everything for us through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Click on the links above to download these fantastic new resources.

Synod Youth & Family Ministry Network

The Youth & Family Ministry Network of the SCSW will be meeting on Thursday, October 25, 2018 from 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the Synod Office OR online via Zoom. All volunteers, lay staff, and rostered ministers who work within the realm of youth and family ministry are invited to join us as we network together and brainstorm how we may engage the youth of our synod over the next year. Be sure to join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/scswyouth/.

Mission Moment: ELCA Hunger Fellows

Each week we are highlighting ministries that are supported by your weekly offerings.  We are grateful for your generosity as it helps us do what matters to God in Jesus’ name!  Please reprint these stories in your newsletters or share them during worship as mission moments as they help to answer the question, “Where does my offering go?”

By Abbigail Hull, ELCA World Hunger Fellow

Advocacy requires collaboration and a gaze towards the future. It was this vision that created the ELCA Hunger Advocacy fellowship. A program made possible by ELCA World Hunger, this fellowship is a year-long transformative experience that combines leadership development, faith formation, and impactful advocacy that moves us toward an end to hunger and a just world where all are fed. This program is in its second year and has already received and developed thoughtful leaders with passion and fresh ideas.

Fellows are placed in various faith-driven public policy offices throughout the United States. The goal of the Hunger Advocacy Fellowship is to build ELCA World Hunger’s capacity to end hunger by deepening and expanding Lutheran advocacy efforts in synods, coalitions and networks.

There are six hunger fellows this year, and one of them works with Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin under the leadership of its director, Rev. Cindy Crane.  We have the pleasure of rubbing elbows with both as LOPPW offices


Hunger Fellow, Kelsey Johnson – The Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin (LOPPW) – Madison

Kelsey Johnson has an active history with the church. Most recently, she served as a ELCA Young Adult in Global Mission (“YAGM”) volunteer in Jerusalem and the West Bank. At the Lutheran School in Ramallah (West Bank), she assisted with English and art classes. She has explored topics related to refugees, baptism, and accompaniment.

Kelsey graduated with a BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Iowa. She has interests in writing, using social media and working with young people.  She shares how grateful she is for this opportunity to learn and serve:

“My experience serving as a Young Adults in Global Mission volunteer in Palestine was formative in shaping how I see accompaniment as the model for social justice in the world. I didn’t realize there was such a huge overlap and call for advocacy in the ELCA, and I was so excited when I heard the Lutheran Office for Public Policy in Wisconsin had received a grant for a Hunger Fellow. Though the fellowship is only in its second year, the Hunger Advocacy Fellowship is an opportunity and space I have felt called to for quite a long time. So far it has been an informative and formative continuation of my YAGM year of service. It builds on the passion I have for social justice, and connects it to tangible issues in the state, while keeping a broad view of social justice and advocacy in the world.” 

Our synod and LOPPW is so blessed to have Kelsey walking together with us!  Please keep Kelsey and all the Hunger Fellows in your prayers!

2018 ELCA Youth Leadership Summit

The ELCA Youth Leadership Summit is an annual gathering for high school youth identified as leaders and adult representatives from each synod from across the ELCA. Two youth in grades 9-12 and one adult per synod are invited to attend. This year Rev. Steve Kottke, Assistant to the Bishop for the South-Central Synod of Wisconsin will accompany our youth to the summit. All costs (including round-trip air travel from Madison Dane County Regional Airport) are covered for this event by our synod and the ELCA.

This summit focuses on leadership development through engaging speakers and thought leaders in key areas at the intersection of leadership and faith in daily life AND faith formation and building connections for high school youth in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Youth will be challenged to take home what they have learned to inspire action in their own synods and youth groups. The Youth Leadership Summit is a shared ministry between ELCA Youth Ministry and The SYMBOL Network (Synodical Youth Ministry Leaders).

The theme for the 2018 Summit is “Through Christ We Can” and will take place November 1-4 at Camp Carol Joy Holling in Nebraska using Philippians 2:1-5 as it’s scriptural base. The event will focus on young people’s call to ministry for the sake of others and advocacy because of their faith. For our learning and networking times we will be joined by various ELCA ministries and staff including Advocacy, Young Adult Ministries, Justice for Women and Global Mission.