Bringing the Gathering Home

Post-Gathering materials

Our post-Gathering materials are ready! The Gathering shouldn’t just stay in Houston. It needs to be brought home and shared and lived. It’s too much a part of each of our stories to let it stop on July 1! These resources are designed to help your group think about how they will continue to live the amazing experiences, preached gospel, life-changing stories and radical hospitality and embody them in their lives. These sessions hold to the 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering theme that was formed from concepts by Morgan Schmidt and our primary Scripture of Ephesians 2:8, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.” Lessons will focus on radical hospitality, building conversations and voicing what you will live for. Download your copies from our resources today, and start using them with your group.

Gathering evaluations

Share feedback from your 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering experience with staff and leadership during listening sessions hosted in conjunction with various ELCA synods, ministries and networks.

Aug. 3 – Pittsburgh, Pa.
Aug. 4 – North Wales, Pa.
Aug. 15 – Iowa City, Iowa
Aug. 16 – Sioux Falls, S.D.
Aug. 20 – St. Louis, Mo.
Sept. 6 – Houston, Texas
Sept. 8 – Santa Ana, Calif.
Sept. 13 – Duluth, Minn.
Sept. 20 – Seattle, Wash.
Sept. 24 – Spicer, Minn.
Sept. 27 – Minneapolis, Minn.
Sept. 29 – Detroit Lakes, Minn.
Sept. 30 – Madison, Wis.
Oct. 1 – Chicago, Ill.
Oct. 4 – Toledo, Ohio
Oct. 9 – Asheville, N.C.

In addition to these in-person evaluations, we’re offering limited space in an online “in-person” evaluation. These will be on the following days (all Central time):

Sept. 10 at 1 p.m.
Sept. 16 at 4 p.m.
Sept. 18 at 7 p.m.

Sign up for the online evaluations here. For more information on any of our evaluations, please email us at

Communion ware

Custom communion ware is made for every Gathering. For this Gathering, we worked with ClayThings! in Houston to create the beautiful sets we used in our closing worship.

These sets feature our brand colors and our theme stamped in the middle. Each set was handmade and, therefore, is unique. For a limited time, you can have your own set to remember the Gathering with.

Order your set from Old Lutheran today.

Sunday offerings

Our offering from Sunday morning totaled $261,226.43!
It will be divided among three ministries: local (Texas Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod), domestic (Prison Congregations of America) and global (Global new starts).

Texas Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod.
As a thank-you for being the host synod for the Gathering, we give a third of our Sunday offering to the Texas Louisiana Gulf Coast Synod. This synod has hosted us before in 2009 and 2012 for our Gatherings in New Orleans, and we were so happy to work with the synod for the 2018 ELCA Youth Gathering in Houston.

Prison Congregations of America
Prison Congregations of America (PCA) is a ministry through which Christian congregations are established in prisons around the country. There are currently over 30 congregations that follow the PCA model of prison ministry, in which the “members” are people who are incarcerated, and the congregation is led by a pastor from the outside who is trained and accountable to the sponsoring denomination. The congregation, though denominational in sponsorship, is ecumenical and open to all who wish to participate. The pastor is supported by other congregations, that also take turns worshiping with the inside group. The strong inside-outside relationship is reinvigorating congregations across the nation.

Global ministries
We recognize that being the church together means being the church outside of the United States. With that in mind, we are raising up Global new starts as recipients of a third of the Sunday morning offering with the hope that we can continue to do God’s work around the world.

Still time to participate in ELCA World Hunger’s Global Farm Challenge!

Thanks to your generous giving in Houston, we’re more than halfway to our $500,000 fundraising goal as part of ELCA World Hunger’s Global Farm Challenge.

The Global Farm Challenge is a yearlong, youth-driven fundraising challenge to help end hunger and poverty. These gifts will be used to support ELCA World Hunger’s agricultural programs and equip communities around the world with livestock, seeds, tools, training and more.

Thanks to generous friends in the ELCA, all gifts toward this challenge – including gifts from individuals and congregations – will be matched, dollar for dollar, until we reach our goal. Let’s not leave these matching dollars on the table! There’s still so much life-saving work to be done. Please help by donating today and inviting others to join.

Want to see how your gifts are making a difference? The same 360-degree, virtual-reality video that 4,000 youth and adult leaders watched in the NRG Center is now online. Watch “Seeds of Change in Malawi,” and see how our church is at work in Malawi, where most families rely on their small farms for food and income.

Find more videos, resources and information at

Share your stories

As you continue to debrief and share your Gathering experience, don’t forget about us! If you have any memories you would like to share with us, we want to hear them! Send us your stories, reflections and pictures to These moments help us see the whole picture of our event and inspire us while making plans for 2021.