Let us begin by thanking God for such a blessed year. 2017 was the first year in which Helen and myself were called to become the head youth leaders. We were quite nervous to accept this responsibility, though the load was made light with help from our team.

The new youth team consisted of John and Zuss Knelsen, as well as Pete and Lena Knelsen, who have brought many years of teaching and leadership experience to the team.

We have had many exciting times getting to know our youth and one another as a team. We take turns with teaching, and have covered a variety of topics surrounding the theme of “growth”.

It has been my goal to use our time of teaching and lessons not just to inform the students, but to spark a curiosity of what the Christian walk is and how to continue growing in it themselves.

In this regard we have talked through some interesting topics as well as some difficult to understand ones (try explaining Malachi 1:1-4). We also strive to get the youth involved with leading, from lessons on Sunday morning, to Friday evening volleyball we want students to embrace their role in youth as a place to practice our church mission.

The youth had a well-funded program this year with opportunities to do activities. We took them to see the Jackalopes and Rockhounds, also swimming at the bottomless lakes (which is much safer than it sounds). These were only some of the events we enjoyed with our group.

We also had 2 fundraisers this year, one being a Softball tournament and the other an annual Golf Tournament done with the Missions team where we split the proceeds. These were used to help with the AMC Youth retreat cost in Horn Creek Camp, Colorado. The speaker was Ryan Fontenot continuing on last year’s theme of “Purpose” with “Unashamed” Romans 1:16. We had 39 go from GMC including the band and leaders. -This was not the first time we were in Colorado, we took 6 youth, one young adult, John and Zuss and myself to the Desperation conference in Colorado Springs, Naomi Giesbrecht was serving there and gave us an opportunity to support her and to be encouraged through the conference.

We ended the year with our annual Christmas banquet, and for the first time in a while caroling.

Our goal for this upcoming year is to have a deeper relationships with the parents of our students. In doing so we may align our efforts in helping our youth hold on to the faith, and to become the Christian leaders our community needs.

Bradley Peters