High Resolution Displays

future gathering

The ELCA holds a triennial Youth Gathering every three years in Houston, Texas. This year’s edition featured an event-within-an-event. Its main attractions included a day of service in the host city, interactive learning with a wide array of ELCA partners, and worship. Overall, the gathering attracted 636 participants and 48 volunteers.

The ELCA also sponsors a number of agencies and initiatives, including a food bank, immigration agency, and human trafficking organizations. While the conference is in Houston, its impact extends to surrounding metro areas and beyond. For example, a “Blast Off for Books” initiative collected 40,000 books that were distributed to kids in the Houston area. Additionally, the ELCA has made several church building improvements in the Houston area.

As for the actual event, ELCA partnered with 200 local nonprofits and agencies to make sure the gathering was a success. In addition, participants were encouraged to attend local schools and community events. These include the aforementioned “Blast Off for Books” and a day of service at a neighborhood park. There were also a number of educational events and seminars. Some of the more notable ones included a presentation by NISGUA partnerships coordinator Frank Scoffield Sanchez, who talked about the role of leadership in the modern age, and a panel discussion by the CEO of a Houston based start-up company.

Those who attended the conference will get to share their stories with others. They’ll also be given the chance to check out the “Wonders of the World,” a futuristic exhibit featuring exhibits from around the world. To round out the event, there will be a series of fun and exciting activities, such as a scavenger hunt. With the goal of fostering collaboration and boosting social capital, this is one not to miss.

While the LCMS may be the heir to the throne, there are many more effective avenues for gathering and promoting shared faith in the modern world. One such endeavor is the aforementioned Communities for Future online Summit. Designed to bring together leading thinkers from around the world, the summit is free to the public and will be held from February 1-10, 2020. Touted as the “world’s first and largest gathering of its kind,” this event will feature presentations, demonstrations, and workshops on topics such as a “regenerative and inclusive” economy, the power of communities, and how to reimagine the church for the twenty-first century.