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Northeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA

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Middle School Gathering
Free Webinar!
Youth Group Opportunities
Discipleship Challenge
Western States Youth Gathering
Continuing Ed Events
Outdoor Ministries
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NE MN Synod
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Youth ministry is hard work. We are strengthened personally and professionally when we get together regularly to share our stories, swap ideas, learn from each other and lean on each other.  Make time this month to join in on one of these network opportunities, or have coffee with a youth worker near you!

Duluth Area Network Meetings:
Second Thursday of Every Month, 10:00am
Beaner's in West Duluth
Contact Deb Westerberg for more info.

Brainerd Area Network Meetings:
Second Thursday of Every Month, 10:00am
Caribou Coffee on Hwy 371
Contact Sarah Marshall for more info.
Cert Schools

Vibrant Faith Training School 
This unique training experience changes lives, equips leaders, and transforms congregations in effective and creative faith formation, culminating in creating a ministry plan that will guide your efforts with children, youth, and families. Learn more.

Sponsored by

Youth Leadership 
This program is a unique, holistic leadership development program that covers the key areas of ministry. We come alongside you as you grow as a leader in your particular context, sharpen your vision and encourage your calling. Learn more. 
NE MN Synod Facebook Group - Join Today!
The NE MN Synod is on Facebook! Join today for synod updates and to share your questions and ministries! Search for "Northeastern Minnesota Synod, ELCA" or click here to join.
October 11, 2016

This summer I had the opportunity to visit Ireland and had my first exposure to traffic driving on the "wrong" side of the road. Our first stop was Dublin where they are well acquainted with - and prepared for - tourists. At nearly every street crossing the walkway was painted with large " LOOK RIGHT" signs to remind tourists to step out of their cultural understanding for crossing a street and be present to a new way of being. Dublin knew the dire consequences if they didn't help people adapt to the culture around them.
It made me wonder...How is our church helping people live their faith (cross the street, if you will) in a changing culture? Where do we need to paint signs as reminders - encouragement - instruction for how to live faith in this day and age? How do we step out of our muscle memory for "doing church" so we can be present to a new way of being? What are the consequences if we don't?
"You shall put these words of mine in your heart and soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and fix them as an emblem on your forehead. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, so that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the Lord swore to your ancestors to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth." (Deuteronomy 11: 18-21)
Wonder with me this year,   
Catherine Anderson 
Coordinator of Youth Ministry
Middle School Gathering 
November 18-19 OR 19-20, 2016
Cragun's Resort, Brainerd
Grades 6-9

Early registration deadline is next Monday, October 17!

Early Registration: $65 if postmarked on or before Oct. 17
Standard Reg.: $75 if postmarked on or after Oct. 18
Join nearly 1000 youth and adults in November for a weekend of faith formation and fun at the Middle School Gathering! With the theme iBelong, we will wonder together about the Apostle's Creed and how it shapes our identity as children of God and draws us into relationship with God and each other. Speaker Kari Lyn Wampler will inspire us, learning clusters will challenge us, family time will connect us, hotel life will give us time to play with new and old friends, and worship will send us out to let others know they belong to God as well!
Registration opens October 1 st! For more information and to download registration forms, go to:

Wondering in Prayer -
Free Webinar!    
October 13, 1:00pm 
Presenter: Mindy Makant

We teach children the Lord's Prayer and prayers for meals and bedtimes, and we often teach children how to pray for friends and family.  We often stop there.  Bu t we are called to worship God with all of heart and soul and m ind.  So, in this session we will explore prayer forms that engage the senses and the ima gination, opening a space for us both to dwell and to wonder in God.

Watch this FREE webinar live by registering here. The recording of this "Wonder" webinar can be found at the NE MN Synod Discipleship Challenge website the next day - along with other "Wonder" webinars.

February 11, 2017
Duluth, MN 

Super Early Bird   
Registration rates are available until December 15!

RECHARGE is a one-day multi-denominational children's and youth ministry conference that aims to inspire and equip church staff and volunteers in their efforts to share their faith with the next generation. Whether you've a 20 year veteran youth worker, just started volunteering as a 2nd grade Sunday School teacher this year or somewhere in between, Recharge is for YOU!  98% of people say they will attend Recharge again AND recommend it to others. This gathering pulls in a wide range of adults who care about the next generation. For more information, visit:

Youth Group Opportunities at Augsburg  

Urban Plunge  
Urban Plunge is an overnight, Augsburg student-led, faith-based experience for Middle and High School youth groups. Come to learn about and explore the gifts and challenges of our Cedar-Riverside neighborhood in Minneapolis by connecting with community members and using  The Sermon on the Mount as a guiding message.

Interfaith Bridge Building  
Interfaith Bridge Building is a youth program which draws from our community's rich diversity to foster interfaith relationships. Congregations book a Saturday to explore interfaith work through a Christian lens, visit a local mosque, and engage in conversation with our Muslim partners.  

For more information on these opportunities, visit 

January 20-23, 2017
Louisville, Kentucky   

Join hundreds of youth workers from across the ELCA for renewal, education and networking. The "E" is much more than a conference! It's space to be stretched, it's worship, it's inspiring speakers, it's learning from colleagues across the country, it's sharing your insights with others, it's informative and transformative, it's the annual gathering of ministries and ministers for conversations around children, youth and family ministry. Learn more and register at:

Discipleship Challenge: WONDER

How are you WONDERING together this fall? This year's Discipleship Challenge invites you to WONDER together for at least 10 minutes every time you gather, and we have new resources posted to help you do this! The Practice Discipleship curriculum, Wonder, has been adapted to use as five minute devotions, 10-15 minute discussions, 30-45 minute session, or use the original curriculum for a one hour discussion/study. Webinars from the curriculum can be paused for group discussion as questions are posed. Or use the writer videos to initiate discussion. So many options to WONDER together! Find out more and get these resources at:
Western States Youth Gathering (WSYG) 
June 28 - July 2, 2017
California Lutheran University in Southern California 
For all high school youth in ELCA Regions 1 - 4.
WSYG occurs every three years. There will be mass gatherings with great speakers and musicians; learning and small group experiences; a beach day; immersion experience in Los Angeles; worship that takes you in new directions; and much more!
Registration opens on Oct. 3. $425/person. This price goes up to $460 on January 3, 2017.

More information at: 
Continuing Education Events Beyond Our Synod
Our synod is located just hours away from some of the top youth ministry training in the nation! Click on the organizations below for a complete listing of training opportunities!
Youth Leadership

Offers 3 hour, one day, intensive and certificate programs.


Peer Ministry / Marilyn Sharpe Ministries

Living Room Summit, Peer Ministry Leadership Camps and trainings, Coaching.

Vibrant Faith Ministries
Online learning, coaching. Tons of free resources on the Faith Formation Learning Exchange
You are welcome to copy and use any of the information or writings above for use in your newsletters and other communications.

If you have any questions regarding any of these events, please contact me at the number and addresses listed below.

Catherine Anderson
Coordinator of Youth Ministry


Phone: 218.724.4424, ext. 124
Fax: 218.724.4393