Our Saturday night youth groups continue to be a vital connection point for our ’Ohana Youth. We are consistently seeing around 20 middle and high school youth show up for our gatherings, which is an ideal number for group activities, games and sharing in dialogue. Thank you parents for supporting their participation! Lately, we’ve been emphasizing our theme of being light-bearers in the world, exploring how we are each able to bring light into dark places, both for ourselves and for those that we are in relation with. Souper Bowl Sunday was a wonderful opportunity to bring light to those experiencing food insecurity in our community. We had a wonderful group of over 10 youth holding their soup pots after worship and an excited gathering of young people tallying the donations. My office was packed with youth and the energy was awesome! It is powerful to witness our young adults’ eyes being opened to all the ways they can make a difference. Your generosity makes it all possible, thank you.

We are already anticipating summer, as we plan our Sierra Service Project (SSP) trip, July 21-26, to Del Norte County, CA. We are also exploring the possibility of taking our youth group down to Long Beach, CA for the 2024 Western Regional Youth Event, June 23-27th! Please contact Youth Minister, Mark Lindberg, if you or a young adult you know have interest in either of these trips. We are still looking for one adult chaperone for SSP and have a few slots available for youth participants. A $100 deposit is required for our SSP trip and slots are filled on a first come, first served basis. You may also make this deposit by check or online (visit our website at fcceugene.org, click on “Online Giving” in the top left corner of the home page, then select “SSP Parent payments” in the drop down menu before clicking the “continue” button). Financial assistance is available.

We also have upcoming service opportunities at Turtle Flats (ecological restoration) plus an intergenerational hike at Sweet Creek Falls is in the works; stay tuned for more information.

During this time of Lent, our thoughts and prayers go with all of our people, recognizing that we are all on courageous journeys. We remember that our lives take on more value when we are able to engage ourselves and each other with the honesty, directness and courage it takes to speak our truths. We notice that Jesus engaged in many courageous conversations, and he seems to lean into that space. What does it look like to build the skills to be in the spaces Jesus was in and the values that were at the heart of his ministry when he was being challenged? We encourage all to join us on this journey towards Jerusalem.