Western Jurisdiction youth leaders invited to retreat in Oregon-Idaho Conference

Western Jurisdiction youth leaders invited to retreat in Oregon-Idaho Conference


More often than not, the young people who walk into their weekly or monthly youth group meetings are carrying a lot on their heart.

More often than not, the youth leaders assigned to work with their local youth feel isolated and alone in their work as they try to provide meaningful spiritual development for kids who have higher-than-ever rates of anxiety and depression.

With support from other youth leaders, West Portland Pastor Christy Dirren has worked to put together a youth workers retreat Sept. 22-25 at Suttle Lake Camp that either paid or volunteer staffers from across the Western Jurisdiction of The United Methodist Church can attend.

“Youth and youth workers are facing all sorts of new challenges,” said Dirren. “The impact of technology, the disconnect from church and faith communities being commonplace, the lack of authentic connections as well as the distractions and multiple demands on the time of the youth workers and the youth have created additional obstacles to effective youth ministry.”

This retreat will feature guest speaker Georgene Egglesston, a certified therapist from Portland whose work focuses on trauma, grief, depression and anxiety. Worship will be lead by Pastor Josh Hawk. There will also be time for participants to relax, reflect and rejuvenate their spirits through worship and other activities.

The cost? A simple $50.

“We’re intentionally making it affordable because a lot of youth workers don’t have a budget or their church doesn’t have the resources,” she said. "Participants will leave with a "Tool Box" full of resources and materials designed to equip, empower, and encourage."
Youth workers are asked to bring a resource, idea, or game  that has been invaluable to them in their ministry setting that others can possibly replicate, adding more to each other's tool box.

“It will give (youth workers) some hands-on, practical tools in ways of addressing the reality that some of these youth face,” said Dirren, who has been involved in youth ministry in some capacity the majority of her 33 years in ministry.

For more information about the retreat and to get registered visit the Go Camping website.


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