The Full Report

20 Feb

A little article i’ve written for our church mag which gives our weekend’s activities more fully.

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Youth Weekend Away – Saint Mark’s College

When we  arrived at Saints Mark’s it was dark after fighting our way through Friday evening traffic and dark country lanes.

Rooms were assigned and luggage unpacked (well at least thrown into appropriate rooms). The first thing to do was to get some dinner, cooked by the staff at the centre. The food all weekend was fabulous as were the centre staff. Our first session in the chapel that evening introduced our theme for the weekend

STOP, LOOK, LISTEN, LIVE

After worshipping together we explored a little of how often God speaks when we allow ourselves the space to stop and to be quiet and aware of God around us. We finished off with a night walk on which we wandered in God’s creation and saw the stars so often hidden from us in the lights of London.

Saturday morning started with an optional communion service at 7:30am. We had everybody turn out which was quite amazing after many people didn’t get much sleep! It was wonderful to break bread together and start the day in quiet reflection as the sun streamed in through the impressive stained glass window in the chapel. This weather continued all weekend as there was barely a cloud in the sky, cold mornings, warm afternoons and freezing nights.

The rest of Saturday was composed of Session 2 ‘Look’ in which people were given space to individually go for a walk and then time to sit and ponder questions around our relationship with God and what we want God to do in our lives. This was followed by free time to play football, twister, table tennis, pool, art or just sitting and chatting.

In the evening we had a guest speaker Nick Mitchell (Youth Minister at Edmonton Baptist Church). Nick challenged people on a number of things including how much space do you find to be with God during your week. He told us that often God is speaking to us it’s just that we’re not listening. We ended the meeting with an amazing time of prayer where many people had a very powerful experience of the Holy Spirit and felt God speaking to them about specific issues.

Sunday was fairly relaxed as we shared communion together (well not everyone but a good number of us still met). After packing and clearing out our rooms (no easy task as people seemed to have spread their luggage everywhere) we shared a final time of worship together in which Sarah got us thinking about how we as a group can make a difference for God in the communities that we are part of.

We had a delicious Sunday roast together followed by a couple of hours to chat some more and to finish off a very competitive football match before departing. All in all it was a great time together where we got to know each other and God better. Thank you for all of your prayers.

Lewis

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4 Responses to “The Full Report”

  1. roy February 20, 2008 at 2:01 pm #

    sounds like a great time….always good when they go well

  2. Hannah & Abbie February 21, 2008 at 7:36 am #

    Sounds like a good report of our weekend and sums up everything!!!!!!!!! It was great fun!!!!!!! 🙂

  3. claire March 3, 2008 at 10:30 am #

    Sounds like you had a good time. I really like the way that there was plenty of space to be and reflect. I think, and I’m in the process of putting together a residential weekend, that the temptation is often to cram it full of stuff and we fall into that programmed out style of youth ministry rather than the contemplative, reflective style that’s probably better for us all. So it’s good to read of a weekend where twister and football was prioritised alongside space to reflect on where we’re at with God! Would be interested to know how, if at all you structured that individual time. Good job! Enjoy Paris 🙂

  4. weirdhippy March 3, 2008 at 12:59 pm #

    I told them to go out for a walk and then to find a quiet place on their own to sit. I gave them each an envelope with their name on it that they were to open when they found themselves some space. Here are the instructions inside that i asked them to write/pray about.

    Read Psalm 8
    What reminds you of God today as you walk/sit?
    What do you want God to speak to you about this weekend?
    Find somewhere quiet to sit and let God by his Holy Spirit come and meet you
    What do you want God to do in your life?
    Re-Read Psalm 8

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