Early Evening June 28 2018 Youth Gathering!

GOD'S LOVE changes everything! Our hearts are full as we gather with 30000 of our best friends!

Already we've worshipped our God through song and prayer, but on this night it was all about intimate and loving relationship with God through Christ incarnate in us, God's children. A young woman of 19 who finally feels like she is welcome and loved by God after ten years of battling anorexia because nine people around called her fat!

Another young woman whose mother came to our country from Nigeria and by the color of her skin and by her culture wasn't sure if she could belong in an ELCA congregation. But what she found was a place of acceptance and love!

These stories carried such a powerful message because for both of these women God was felt and experienced in the people who surrounded them, encouraged them and loved them with a kind of love that could only come from our God!

Tonight I am ever thankful to God who offers us this kind of passionate love in our communities of faith. May we all strive to be so welcoming to people whom we meet in our daily lives. Now... I need to pay attention to the reminder of our time together but wanted to share this feeling with you before it passed. Peace and blessings PJ

Shirley Kulp tells us about the prayer stones: During our synod day each of us signed a blue prayer stone with "Jesus" on the front and our name on the back. We exchanged stones and now each one of us can pray for a sister or brother in Christ and those who received our stones will pray for us. God's love changes everything.

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