This past year, we had over 900 young adults apply to volunteer at the LCMS Youth Gathering in New Orleans this summer. While not all of them will be able to join us, the number of applicants has stuck in my head. Working as a Young Adult Volunteer is not an easy job; it has long hours and little thanks. Yet an extraordinary number of young adults showed a willingness to join “Orange Nation” in service to the high school youth and adults attending the Gathering. Time and time again the young adults of the LCMS have shown a willingness and excitement to serve others in Christ alone. This passion for sharing the love of Jesus through acts of service to our neighbors has been one of the driving forces in the design of Lutheran Young Adult Corps.
Starting in June 2017, Lutheran Young Adult Corps will provide long term service opportunities for young adults, giving them a chance to serve for 10 weeks in the summer or 10 months through the school year. In locations like St. Louis, Philadelphia, and New Orleans, they will become not just volunteers but neighbors and friends in communities of need. Their full time service will allow churches, campus ministries, and Registered Service Organizations a chance to expand how they share the Good News of Jesus Christ in their communities. Alongside Lutheran Young Adult Corps, we recognize not every young adult is going to be able to serve for 10 months or even 10 weeks. It’s important we lift up and increase the number of ways LCMS young adults can serve as well.
You don’t have to wait for 2017 for that to happen. In just a few weeks we will host a Young Adult Servant Event in St. Louis. Participants, primarily 18-30, from across the country will join us in the evening on Thursday, June 2nd and will serve through 1 pm on Sunday, June 5th. With a $60 registration fee, participants’ meals, t-shirt, and project supplies will be covered. We will sleep at St. Trinity Lutheran Church in South St. Louis, and join together in service, Bible Study, and worship as we celebrate what God has done for us.
On Friday, participants will work doing cleaning, light construction, and student programming at the Peace Center for New Americans. The Peace Center is an outreach center for Christian Friends of New Americans, a LCMS ministry to immigrants and refugees in St. Louis. Among other tasks, participants will break up cement for the installation of a new sump pump and provide a special program for grade school immigrant and refugee students. Young adult servant events have worked at the Peace Center many times, and it’s a great opportunity to support their ongoing work.
On Saturday, we will work at our host congregation, St. Trinity Lutheran Church in South St. Louis. St. Trinity hosts a summer program for community students as well as other servant events for teenage youth. As they prepare for an influx of summer programming and our service will help them be ready for sharing the Gospel through the summer and beyond. Both Christian Friends of New Americans and St. Trinity are working with Lutheran Young Adult Corps and will be placement sites for participants in 2017.
If you or a young adult you know is interested in joining us in St. Louis, the registration forms must be filled out and returned by May 25th. Participants can return Medial Release form as well as their payment when they arrive. See http://calendar.lcms.org/event/lutheran-young-adult-servant-event-st-louis for more information. For questions, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 314-996-1158. For more information about Lutheran Young Adult Corps, you can click on the link above or find us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @Lutheranyacorps. Please continue to keep these young adults in your prayers as they grow in faith and filled with the Holy Spirit, share that faith with others as they serve.