Youth E-Chat
Northeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA

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In This Issue
Youth Ministry Survey
Bishop's Convocation
Plan-It Workshop
Eco Faith Youth Camp
Free Webinar
Peace Not Walls
Discipleship Challenge
Youth Ministry Positions
Continuing Ed Events
Outdoor Ministries
in and around
NE MN Synod
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Get Networked!

Youth ministry is hard work. We are strengthened personally and professionally when we get together regularly to share our stories, swap ideas, learn from each other and lean on each other.  Make time this month to join in on one of these network opportunities, or have coffee with a youth worker near you!

Duluth Area Network Meetings:
Second Thursday of Every Month, 10:00am
Beaner's in West Duluth
Contact Deb Westerberg for more info.

Brainerd Area Network Meetings:
Second Thursday of Every Month, 10:00am
Caribou Coffee on Hwy 371
Contact Sarah Marshall for more info.
Cert Schools

Vibrant Faith Training School 
This unique training experience changes lives, equips leaders, and transforms congregations in effective and creative faith formation, culminating in creating a ministry plan that will guide your efforts with children, youth, and families. Learn more.

Sponsored by

Youth Leadership 
This program is a unique, holistic leadership development program that covers the key areas of ministry. We come alongside you as you grow as a leader in your particular context, sharpen your vision and encourage your calling. Learn more. 
March 11, 2016

We had a fabulous, fun and faith-filled weekend at Cardia Deo last weekend! 200 senior high youth and adults gathered to learn about being SENT into the world to share the story of God's love everywhere, with everyone.

The story of how this event transforms faith lives is best shared by the youth from their evaluation comments:
  • I learned what my faith means to me and why it's important.
  • I was really moved by the homelessness event. It really struck home and opened my eyes to the fact that there are people even at my school who I wouldn't expect to be homeless.
  • The most meaningful part of my weekend was being told that I was sent and I now feel more prepared to go out in the world and share God's love.

You can find more pictures on the NE MN Synod Facebook Group. We hope to see you there next year!
Together in Christ,  
Catherine Anderson 
Coordinator of Youth Ministry
NE MN Synod Youth Ministry Survey  
You are invited to take the NE MN Synod Youth Ministry Survey!

NE MN Synod youth ministry teams will be doing some re-visioning work in the coming months in order to continue to support synod congregations in faith formation with middle school and high school youth. Y
our input in this process is invaluable! Leaders from all of our synod congregations are invited to fill out the survey. Whether your congregation is large or small, has a vibrant youth ministry program or if you wonder what youth look like - we need your story to have a complete picture! More than one leader from a congregation can take the survey - the more perspectives we have, the better! The survey closes April 6, 2016.

The survey is in a Google Form at:
Please share this URL with others in your congregation. If you have trouble accessing the online form, email Catherine for a hard copy. Thank you in advance for sharing your congregation's youth ministry story with us!

2016 Bishop's Convocation
Lutherans: Reformed and Reforming -
an educational offering for the entire Northeastern Minnesota Synod as we gear up to the 500th Anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation.
There will be two identical opportunities to attend this year's Bishop's Convocation:

Saturday, April 2, 2016 from 1-4 pm 
at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Hibbing
Sunday, April 3, 2016 from 2-5 pm 
at First Lutheran Church, Aitkin

Keynote Speaker: Bishop David Zellmer, South Dakota Synod
"How the Heck Did We Get to the Reformation?"

Topics of 2 Workshop Sessions:
  • Lutherans and Creation Care
  • Lutherans and Immigration
  • Lutheran Teaching at School of Lay Ministry
  • Lutheran Theology: God at work in the world (Led by LYO Youth)
  • ELCA Today: Grounded and Changing
  • The Global Lutheran
  • Lutheran Philosophy at Portico Benefits for Rostered Leaders (Saturday session only)
  • Picture the Reformation: Luther, Cranch and the Power of the Visual
Reproducible Poster

Eventbrite - 2016 Bishop's Convocation
PLAN-IT Workshop  
Sunday April 3, 1-7pm
Messiah Lutheran, Mountain Iron, MN
Facilitated by Lyle Griner, National Peer Ministry Director
Brought to you by the Laurentian Youth Leadership Project

This guided day of planning will result in a 12-18 month outline for your youth ministry. Begin planning using three vital ministry lenses, learn from proven planning techniques, receive helpful program templates, and find plenty of time and space to work on your ministry design.

Bring a team of adult and youth leaders, a laptop, and the "sacred dates" you need to plan around (school, community, church, even your own family!) Borrow, exchange, even steal!- ideas from other participants. Learn tools you and your leaders can use again and again.

Workshop & meal are free for all Laurentian Conference  congregations. Other churches are welcome: $25 if your church has one ministry professional, $50 if two, $75 if three (pastors, youth directors, etc), regardless of how many of you attend this workshop. RSVPs needed by Wed March 23. Fill out this Google Forms registration for you and your group. For more info, contact Pastor Evelyn Weston ([email protected]).
EcoFaith Youth Camp   
June 26-30, 2016
Duluth, MN

Grades 9-12 (at time of registration)
$100 per person if postmarked by April 1st.
$125 per person if postmarked April 2nd or after

The EcoFaith Youth Camp is a week long day camp for high school youth and their adult leaders that explores the intersection between environmental, economic, and racial justice in a faith context. Each day will include field trips, activities and conversations with different local groups including organic farmers, canoeing the St. Louis river, and meeting leaders from local indigenous communities. There will also be one night of camping along the north shore as we visit an "off the grid" home!

The EcoFaith Youth camp is sponsored by the NE MN Synod, in partnership with the NE MN Synod Creation Care Task Force and Peace United Church of Christ. For groups outside the Duluth area, free housing options at local congregations are available. Contact Catherine Anderson for more information.

More information can be found at
Practice Discipleship Webinar:
"Wondering Through Service Learning"    
Thursday, April 14th  
1:00pm Central Time

Presenter: Mark Jackson,
Trinity Lutheran College

Service learning moves service projects and mission trips from one-time events to experiences that open minds and hearts to new ways of thinking and acting. For example, youth might ponder tough questions about poverty in your hometown, notice the incredible artistry within God's creation, or glimpse the wisdom of a senior citizen in a simple conversation. By emphasizing adequate preparation, intentional reflection, and sharing stories with others, service experiences can be brought to life in profound, astonishing ways.

This webinar is part of the Practice Discipleship series on "Wonder." The webinars are FREE! But you must pre-register by clicking here. Can't make the date? No problem! All webinars are recorded, and available at  
Peace Not Walls  
NE MN Synod Young Adults Justice Pilgrimage
to the Holy Land

July 7-17th, 2016

Young adults (ages 18-30ish) in the NE MN Synod are encouraged to participate in this unique opportunity to be engaged in the pursuit of peace and justice in the Holy Land. This justice-oriented trip will be led by Bjorn and Laura Anderson, who have received training to lead this trip through the ELCA's Peace Not Walls Campaign & ELCA Young Adults program. For more information, click on the links below. Questions may be directed to Laura or Bjorn Anderson at [email protected]

Discipleship Challenge: Story   
Featured Study Guide: 
Living in Stories  
We live by stories. In the middle of God's story, which
includes all of creation and the life of Jesus, we live and tell our life stories. What story are you living?
Where do you fit in God's story? The Discipleship Challenge Study Guide, "Living in Stories" is a helpful resource for leading conversations with various leaders and groups, to share our stories of faith and the gifts we share with each other.

More Study Guides and resources can be found at:
Youth Ministry Positions
Director of Youth and Family Ministry 
Lutheran Church of the Cross, Nisswa 
Lutheran Church of the Cross (LCC) in Nisswa, MN, is seeking a full-time Director of Youth and Family Ministry to revitalize the ministry to youth in grades 7-12 and their families. We seek someone who has the skills for relational ministry to both youth and their parents. This person will also be part of a team that works on an integrated birth-to-graduation children's and youth ministry structure at LCC. Our congregational mission centering on the six  marks of discipleship (prayer, scripture reading, worship, service in Christ's name, stewardship and hospitality will be a central part of all youth and family ministry programming. Most importantly, a love and passion for Christ and youth ministry is essential. The person in this position will work closely with the Director of Children and Family Ministry and Associate Pastor.
For more information or questions, please contact Pastor Andy Smith at 218-963-2564. Resumes can be sent to: Lutheran Church of the Cross, Attn:  Pastor Andy Smith, PO Box 29, Nisswa, MN  56468.  
NE MN Synod Facebook Group - Join Today!
The NE MN Synod is on Facebook! Join today for synod updates and to share your questions and ministries! Search for "Northeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA" or click here to join.
Continuing Education Events Beyond Our Synod
Our synod is located just hours away from some of the top youth ministry training in the nation! Click on the organizations below for a complete listing of training opportunities!
Youth Leadership

Offers 3 hour, one day, intensive and certificate programs.


Peer Ministry / Marilyn Sharpe Ministries

Living Room Summit, Peer Ministry Leadership Camps and trainings, Coaching.

Vibrant Faith Ministries
Online learning, coaching. Tons of free resources on the Faith Formation Learning Exchange
You are welcome to copy and use any of the information or writings above for use in your newsletters and other communications.

If you have any questions regarding any of these events, please contact me at the number and addresses listed below.

Catherine Anderson
Coordinator of Youth Ministry


Phone: 218.724.4424, ext. 124
Fax: 218.724.4393