The Abiding Presence youth attended the 2015 ELCA Youth Gathering in Detroit, MI. The ELCA Youth Gathering is a ministry of the churchwide organization of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to, with and for high school-aged youth and their adult leaders. The Gathering, as it is known, is a triennial event that takes place over five days – Wednesday to Sunday – and includes opportunities for worship, service, fellowship, study and holy play.
Abiding Presence has lots of opportunities for middle school (7th & 8th grade) and high school (9th-12th grade) youth.
The majority of our 7th & 8th grade youth are involved in our two year confirmation program that prepares them to affirm their baptismal promises and take on the responsibilities associated with being adults of faith. The confirmation program has four components that keep youth growing in faith, having fun and forming lasting relationships with one another:
- Wednesday Night Gathering
- Sunday School
- Service to the Church
- Fun and Fellowship
Wednesday Night Gathering
Confirmation youth come together each week during Wednesday Night Gathering from 6:30-8:15 p.m. They have dinner together, meet in small groups with mentors and meet with the Pastor or Vicar as a large group for the night's lesson. Over the course of the two years the youth study the Lord's Prayer, the Apostles' Creed, the 10 Commandments, Holy Communion and Holy Baptism.
On Sunday mornings confirmation youth gather in their small groups with mentors from 10:00-10:45 a.m. to discuss the day's Bible story and how it impacts their daily lives.
Serving the Church
Confirmation youth are expected to be active in the church by attending worship and serving as worship leaders. Youth serve as crucifers, acolytes, ushers and behind the scenes in other leadership roles.
Fun & Fellowship
Throughout the year there are special events in which the confirmation youth participate that provide for fun, fellowship and, of course, faith. They hold lock-ins at the church, attend the Baltimore Youth Quake and participate in service projects such as the Crop Walk.
Wednesday Night Gathering
Senior High Youth will gather on Wednesday evenings from 6:15-8:30 p.m. Come for dinner as part of Wednesday Night Gathering, enjoy some time hanging out with each other in the youth room and then participate in a youth group activity. We'll be doing things such as "Frozen Yogurt and Faith Talk," service projects, etc. You won't want to miss it!
"Waffles & W(ii)e" on Sunday Mornings (September-May)
Senior High youth gather in the youth room on Sunday mornings from 10:00-10:45 a.m. to eat waffles, play Wii and, most importantly, to talk about what it means to be "We, the body of Christ" in the world. Come talk about what it means to follow Jesus today as high school youth. Matt Dyson and Phil Franke lead the group. All 9th-12th grade youth are welcome to attend!
Youth Group Activities
The High School Youth Group takes part in lock-ins, retreats, service projects and other great events that are scheduled throughout the year. Favorite events include the VA Beach Youth Zone, CROP Walk, Lake Anna swimming & boating, lock-ins at the church and laser tag.