Lutheran Youth Organization

LYO Lutheran Youth Organization logoThe Northern Illinois Synod’s Youth ministry is coordinated through Lutheran Outdoor Ministries Center in Oregon, IL.

For more information on youth ministry in the NIS, contact Audrey Adams at 815-732-2220.


    G-News February 2018

    Do you know how to get back into your Gathering account?

    FAQ: How do I get into my Gathering account?

    Many of you have called or emailed us asking how to get back into your Gathering account, so here are some simple instructions to help you with that!

    1. Follow the link on our congregational registration page. Maybe bookmark this page to get back to it when you're in a hurry.
    2. Type in your congregation ID. This may look like you're registering a new group, but because you've already started your registration, it will prompt you for the next step.
    3. Type in the email for your primary adult leader.
    4. You're in!

    If you have any problems logging back into your account, please email us at


    Hotels have been assigned! To see which hotel your group has been placed in, log into your Gathering account, click on congregation details, and scroll until you see your housing assignment. Please note that rooms types have not been assigned yet, and all assignments are subject to change.

    This is not the time to contact your hotel. On March 15, a housing letter will be uploaded to your account. At that time, you can start contacting your hotel with deposits and rooming lists. If you need to change the rooms you requested, please wait until after room types have been assigned. At that point if you feel that what you were assigned will not accommodate your group, please contact us and we will work on that with you.

    Give to the Gathering

    Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have been consistent and enthusiastic attendees at the ELCA Youth Gathering and the Multicultural Youth Leadership Event (MYLE) for decades. But how can you fundraise when many in your congregation have lost their homes and businesses? Amid crisis and recovery mode, it is nearly impossible for these congregations to plan to be in Houston this summer. That's where we all come in.

    The Gathering has already provided full financial assistance for MYLE and Gathering registration to all Caribbean Synod attendees. We need to raise at least $70,000 to get the estimated 80 people from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to Houston and pay for their housing and meals.

    All gifts made to the Gathering between Jan. 15 and Feb. 15 will be passed on to congregations in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands attending the Gathering.

    The body of Christ has concern for each other. The body of Christ suffers together and rejoices together. The body of Christ shares its bounty and gifts with each other. We are ONE body. Thanks be to God.

    Interactive Learning webinar

    On Feb. 8 we had our Interactive Learning webinar with team leader Beth Hartfiel. We learned what Interactive Learning is, what to expect, and how to prepare groups to best receive what they will be encountering. You can watch the webinar on our Facebook page or on our Gathering website.

    If you have any questions about Interactive Learning, please email us at

    Contact your synod coordinator

    Have you contacted your synod coordinator yet? Each synod has a Gathering-trained individual available to help you with all your Gathering needs! They are just coming off their second intensive training, are fresh with knowledge and tools and are ready and able to help you. If you have a question or concern about the Gathering, ask your synod coordinator first! Often, they will have the answer and may be able to get back to you faster than the Gathering office. Contact your synod coordinator today! For the 2018 Gathering, your NIS Synod Gathering Coordinator is Peg Miller. Contact her at or 815-440-0003.

    Regular registration closing

    This is your friendly reminder the regular registration ends on Feb.15. This means anyone who registers by that date also needs to make sure that the deposit is postmarked by Feb. 15 in order to lock in the regular registration rate. Late registration begins on Feb. 16, and rates will rise to $440 per registration. For more information on registration, please visit our registration page.

    Extravaganza 2018

    Thank you to everyone who visited us at the 2018 ELCA Youth Ministry Network Extravaganza! We had a blast with you, whether it was at our Intensive Care Course, one of our workshops, the bus tour, or you came by our booth to ask questions and play Gathering Heads Up! We appreciated being able to connect with you face to face and share in this amazing ministry. We couldn't do this amazing work without your support.

    Can't wait to see you all again this summer!

    2018 Gathering timeline at a glance

    Feb. 16, 2018 – Late registration rate begins
    May 15, 2018 – Registration closes and all
    payments are due
    June 24-27, 2018 – MYLE and the tAble
    June 27-July 1, 2018 – ELCA Youth Gathering



    Youth Gathering News from Peg - February 2018

    February 1, 2018

    Boy, I wish I could say that it was HOT in Houston, but I can't. I DO know it will be hot when we are there in June. It is very important, and the trainers repeatedly told us, hydration is important!!!! Bring water bottles and USE them. (That last part of the sentence is for me. I am very bad at staying hydrated!)

    We got information on hotels. You will find the name of your hotel on the main leaders' registration. We are located in the Galleria area of Houston. There are so many going south that we are not all in the same hotels BUT the two hotels are a 5 minute walk between them.

    Marriott Westchase

    • #01979 Bethany, Crystal Lake
    • #02026 St. John, Pearl City
    • #02029 First, Prophetstown
    • #02033 St. John, Sterling
    • #07841 Peace, New Lenox

    Hilton Westchase

    • everybody else

    As I said, we are close to each other.

    Hotel cost will be out later, and you will make your contact with the hotel to pay for the rooms. You will not be able to change the rooms through the hotel; you need to do so through the Gathering office. I will send a list of restaurants in the Galleria area when I get it retyped. It is too light print to copy.

    Double check your main leader's registration. Check on number of rooms, check on whether or not you're marked for Gathering transportation, and check on any changes/edits you may need to make on youth or adults. Take a look at any balance you may have.

    Remember if you have any questions you may contact me through email, phone, or mail.

    As we prepare for the season of Lent, let us be mindful of Christ's love for us. He sacrificed all that we might live in His grace.



    2140 A Grand Detour Rd., Dixon IL 61021

    (815) 440-0003


    Important National Youth Assembly News from Peg

    December 29, 2017

    Blessed New Year to all!

    Still a little business to wrap up the year:

    T-shirt contest for NIS will be to design the t-shirt for Synod Day.  Get your artists ready to send in by JANUARY 15, 2018 their entry.  Youth or adult may enter; label picture with name of artist, name of adult leader, name of the church, city.  Send to me at 2140A Grand Detour Rd., Dixon, IL 61021.  Every entry will receive a free shirt, with the winning entry receiving 5 to share with his/her youth group.  They will be judged by a local artist (not me).  You may use the logo from the Gathering, ELCA or design your own.

    I hate to repeat myself, but I have received some information about the numbers attending and the method of transportation.  Unfortunately, either I am not clear enough in my request or you are not certain as to how you will travel to Houston.  Please humor me and send me a brief email ( to say church, town, adult leader, number going, yes or no to synod bus, and, if not synod bus, how are you traveling.  I need to be in touch with the company after the first of the year to set times and locations for pick up and return.  Right now I have 5 buses reserved, but I am certain of only 2 bus loads.  TriStates Travel is great to work with and is willing to adjust to our needs.  But I NEED to know!  Thank you for your patience on this one!!

    God bless you and your congregations with the peace and love that come during this season of the church year.  Jesus came to show us the love of God and to save us from ourselves and the world.