Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in. – Isaiah 58:12
This month marks my 18th year as Director of Youth Formation at St. Peter’s! It is truly remarkable that St. Peter’s clergy, Vestry, and congregational have supported a robust youth program with a full-time youth director for such a long time. When I came to St. Peter’s the youth program was already a fully supported, dynamic program. I have striven, with the commitment of wonderful volunteer youth leaders, to keep it that way. During my tenure here, thirty-three adult parishioners have given countless hours in service to our youth. Together, we have created a formation program that provides spiritually sound lessons and experiences in which our youth grow in their relationships with God and each other keeping them connected to the church when society seems to work against this choice.
This congregation provides the funds and support necessary for our youth to find their voices in fostering dignity and abundant life within all people, through our educational mission trips. By going to places like Ferguson, Detroit, Wilmington, and Bay St. Louis the young adults in our program see struggles of people across the country, giving them a perspective beyond our Charlotte community. These experiences help shape our young people into compassionate leaders in our community.
You also provide major support for life-changing Holy Pilgrimages where our youth and their leaders experience places that created the saints that grew the Christian church, and thus grows their own faith in ways that continue long into adult lives.
I believe that fully supported and healthy children’s formation and youth formation are two important cornerstones of a church’s life and ministry. Youth, young children, and their families keep a congregation vibrant and growing. This congregation confirms that.
Our youth, their leaders, and I are grateful that St. Peter’s continues to support the building of this Beloved Community, as described by our Presiding Bishop. We will continue to grow young people who will see themselves and others as beloved children of God. Of this, I am certain. If you feel you might be called to work with the next Rite 13 class which begins in September, please let me know. I’d love to discuss the Journey to Adulthood program with you and what being a youth leader entails. I can also refer you to those adult leaders from whom you can learn about the program as they continue to love and support our youth!
Lyn Holt, Director of Youth Formation