Youth Ministry

The purpose of the Youth Ministry Subcommittee is to facilitate faith-formation of young people through:

  • The building up of relationships
  • Resourcing of leaders
  • Organization of youth ministry events that congregations can’t do on their own

For more information on youth ministry in the NIS, contact your conference representative:

North –  Pr. Joanna Patterson

NEPr. Paul Cannon (secretary), Nicole Judkins

EastDeacon Shari Trotter

CentralMelissa Nicholson, Pr. Karyn Kost (chair), Peg Miller

SouthJudy Wilkinson

SWHaley Gustafson

West – vacant

NWBeth Schneider

LOMCAudrey Adams

Synod LiaisonDeacon Karin Graddy

LIGHT Youth Team:

Jennifer Heinrich – C Conf.

Victoria Entwistle – E Conf.

Nathaniel Knutson – E Conf.

Grace Hoening – N Conf.

Alison Lawrence – N Conf.

Brynn Conway – NE Conf.

Samantha Whyte – NE Conf.

Izzie Jackson – NE Conf.

Mina Tolu-Honary – NW Conf.

Coltin Rau – NW Conf.

Heide Gallagher – SW Conf.


    ELCA National Youth Gathering Theme Announced

    We are so excited to announce the theme of the 2021 ELCA Youth Gathering, “boundless: God beyond measure.” Our primary Scripture will be Ephesians 3:19 CEV: “I want you to know all about Christ’s love, although it is too wonderful to be measured. Then your lives will be filled with all that God is.

    We are bound. Bound by our sin, by the expectations of others, by poverty, by -isms that try to divide us, and by so much more. In a life that often feels like it has young people in a suffocating grip, we want them to imagine the boundlessness of God: boundless love, boundless mercy, boundless freedom, boundless creation, boundless strength. All offered from a gracious and loving God who knows and adores them. All so abundant and endless it cannot be measured.

    Our logo is a visual representation of the theme, boundless. With letters that stretch beyond the normal limitations of the written word, the logo reminds us of the immeasurable — and sometimes unexpected — reach of God in our lives and the greater world. The textures used as design elements — from a starry night sky to boundary waters to human diversity — will reflect both Minneapolis as well as the tangible ways we can witness the boundlessness of God’s creation, love, strength and grace in our own lives.

    For more information about the theme, visit our revamped website:


    Join the 2021 ELCA Youth Gathering Planning Team!

    Planning Team Application

    Planning Team

    The Gathering is primarily planned and led by amazing volunteers who serve on 14 different teams. We are now accepting applications from individuals who would like to participate in the planning process. Applications will be accepted through June 21, 2019. During the application process, you will be asked to select up to three teams you find of interest. Learn more about each team’s responsibilities here.

    If you have questions about the application process, please check on our website or email

    Click here to begin your planning team application.

    2021 Timeline

    A timeline of major dates for the 2021 cycle is now on our temporary web page. Add them to your calendar and stay tuned for more details!


    World Hunger

    Our web page is between cycles, but it still has a ton of resources for you to use in your ministry, accessible here.

    Looking for curricula to use this spring or summer? Click on Getting Ready to download the 2018 sessions, and on Archive to see materials from 2015. Either set of curricula can be easily tweaked to use outside of preparation for the Gathering. Click on General for our young adult and cross-generation lessons, and on Synod Day for its 2018 materials. You can also access videos, past gNews and more.

    Please contact us with your ideas and comments.

    Mail: ELCA Youth Gathering, 8765 W. Higgins Road, Chicago, Illinois 60631-4101.

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