Youth Group — Serving in Jesus’ Name

Simply by being a part of our congregation and in the 7th through 12th grades, you are considered to be one of our group! Even if you have never attended a youth group event, we welcome YOU! It is a safe place to join other Christian youth, and be supported in leading a life aware of the many blessings given to you from God, and helping to make a difference in our world.Confirmation Retreat 2015 005The Youth Group typically gathers twice monthly on the first and third Sundays in their remodeled space, rooms 303 & 304. During the summer, meeting days and/or times may change, and special family activities are added.

Below is a sampling of the kinds of things we do:

  • CROP Walk/ice cream party
  • Christmas caroling for shut-ins
  • SOUPER Bowl…collection of donations for PAL
  • Lock-in’s
  • Pool Party
  • Pole Steeple  hike (Caledonia)
  • Christmas Party
  • Softball game
  • Youth  Group Retreat at Camp Nawakwa

In addition, we offer significant help with events in and around our congregation. We help to serve, set up, and clean up at church dinners. We participate in activities such as Hanging of the Greens,  Stop Hunger Now Meal Packaging, the annual picnic, and the annual Easter Egg Hunt. The adults even seem to enjoy having us around! In July 2015, our senior high youth attended the National Youth Gathering in Detroit.  (See below for highlight videos!)  A few of us traveled to Mexico as part of the church’s mission trip in 2014, and we regularly participate in Synod-sponsored events such as the WinterFest.

Details about the youth schedule are announced in the Church Messenger, the weekly Sunday Bulletin, our Facebook Page, and right here on the church’s website.  Check frequently so you don’t miss anything!!

Our Current Calendar FALL 2017

October 15:   CROP Walk at South Western High School

Gather your sponsor donations between now and the Walk and give them to Miss Jan or to the Pecks before or after the walk.  They will NOT be collected at the walk itself!  You may register on-line or you can sign up on the registration sheet the Pecks will have.  (If you’re under 18, your parent needs to sign!)  More information is found under our CROP Walk link on the home page of this website.  Remember to bring a couple of buck for ice cream during the walk!

October 29:   Decorate Church Van for…

Get creative and load up the church van for fun on Monday night!  6-8 p.m.

MONDAY, October 30:   Trunk or Treat, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

The whole congregation is invited to decorate their vehicle’s trunk for this community event!  Please be here by 5:30 to help participants find their parking spots.  Trunks will be open in the parking lot for children, youth and adults to tour.  Please have some candy or other treats to hand out, as many of those who come to Trunk or Treat are in costume.  (You can give candy to those who are not in costume, too!)  We will also be asking for candy/treat donations from the congregation.  Tickets may be purchased to vote on favorite trunks.  Proceeds will benefit Ruth’s Harvest.

November 5:  Everyone’s Birthday Party and POLE STEEPLE HIKE!     Our congregation is having an “Everyone’s Birthday Party” spaghetti dinner right after the 10:45 service.  Please sign up your family in the Gathering Place or call the church office.  After the lunch, we’ll depart for Pole Steeple.  Please bring $$ for an ice cream stop on the way home and a water bottle for the hike.  We should be back about 6:00 p.m.  Parents, we’ll be looking for some transportation help for this event!  Please contact Tim or Chris if you can drive some youth.

November 17-19:  SURVIVOR RETREAT at Camp Nawakwa                                                                       We’ll leave for the “island” at 6:00 p.m. on Friday and will return (if you survive!) on Sunday at noon.  In between we’ll stay at our home base of Grove Lodge, divide into teams and see who can “survive” the weekend!  Will your team stay together to win the Survivor prize or will you be voted off?  What does God say to help us be “survivors in faith?”  Registration forms will be coming soon–watch your snail mail for more information!










All of our off-site activities require a permission slip to participate.  You may print one from the above link or pick up a copy in the Youth Suite.


Contact info for the Pecks, our Youth Leaders: (717)476-9977 and or

Youth service 5.17.15 010Youth service 5.17.15 014

VIDEOS FROM THE NATIONAL YOUTH GATHERING EVENING PROGRAMS are now available on YouTube.  We’ve attached links for each evening’s full program so that you can share in the excitement, sing along with the music and hear the speakers!  Shorter videos of each speaker and many others of Gathering highlights are available on YouTube.  Type in “ELCA Youth Gathering” in the YouTube search for more videos.

Music for Wednesday, the first evening, was by Lost and Found, Larry Callahan and Selected of God, Agape, and Royal Tailor.  Speakers were Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, Mikka McCracken from ELCA World Hunger, and the Rev. Dr. Luke Powery from Duke. (Note:  the first video has sound problems at the beginning–sound should begin around 8-10 minutes in).

Thursday evening featured Karis Ailabouni, who spent a year in Madagascar as a YAGM (Young Adult in Global Mission).  Also speaking were Eric Barreto, professor at Luther Seminary, and Pastor Alexia Salvatierra, a national leader in areas of poverty and immagration.  Music was by Bobby Seigfried and Blanca. The video from Thursday evening follows:

Speakers on Friday were Rani Abdulmasih, pastor to one of the only Arabic speaking congregations in the U.S.; Sarah Funkhouser, YAGM in Jerusalem and the West Bank; Steve Jerbi, a pastor at All People’s Church and advocate for the environment; and Emily Scott, founding pastor of St. Lydia’s, a dinner church in Brooklyn. Rachel Kurtz’s music was great, but the highlight had to be a performance by Motown greats!  Friday evening program:

Music on Saturday was by Trip Lee, rapper and pastor, and Skillet (not shown).  Kyle Larson, YAGM in Mexico City, Veronika Scott, the founder and CEO of the Empowerment Plan in Detroit, Rozella White, ELCA Program Director for Young Adult Ministry, and Marian Wright Edelman, founder and President of the Children’s Defense Fund, spoke at the Saturday evening program:

Sunday morning worship: