Hello my name is Andrew Beals and I will be a Junior at East Meck high next year. This is my second year of going to Montreat. This past week we have been in search of the missing peace and I am having a tougher time wrapping my head around that concept with what the pastor is preaching to us. But my small group and I have bonded together and I always say hey whenever I see them around town. Last night Sardis met with the keynote crew to have dinner together and my group talked to the guy from the Czech Republic; it was very cool talking to him about the similarities and differences between the US and his home country. I have enjoyed the various themes of the days like Timber Tuesday and Jersday Thursday. On behalf of the Sardis crew I can say the graduated seniors will be missed and it will not be the same without them. Can’t wait till next year Montreat see u soon.
Montreat Youth Conference Day 2
Monday is a very special day in the life of Montreat Youth Conference participant. On Monday morning, after the first keynote, you get to meet your small group for the first time. The small groups are not as small as one would normally think, usually having between 25-30 participants, which, admittedly, is much smaller than the large group of 1,200 youth. The small groups are seemingly random, but the idea is to not have someone from your back home group in your small group. This allows you to have meaningful conversations with other Christians who care about you but won’t be able to hold any revelations about you over you in front of your friends. It is a powerful process that has worked for many, many years. Strangers on Monday leave Friday, sometimes forming life long bonds.
Small groups usually break into smaller groups to have more meaningful conversations and to dig deeper into the messages of the day. After a stirring keynote, where several hot point were brought up, participants moved to their small groups. Keynote brought up important topics that we were able to unpack in the small groups.
After an all-too-brief lunch (and important nap) break, we were back with our small groups learning more about each other and trying to define what peace is. We looked at famous peacemakers and talked about what it means to be a peacemaker.
Worship tonight was lively! None of the youth had trouble following where the preacher as going with his sermon. He was able to relate his family’s struggles as Asian-Americans to everyone in the room. He was able to help us understand what peace means in the face of persecution because of the color of your skin. He talked about his grandmother and the inspiration she was to his life. And he helped us understand Jesus’ words about peace when he met his disciples in a locked house after his resurrection.
Please continue to be in prayer for us as we experience God’s peace this week!
— Adrian Martin
Montreat Youth Conference Day 1
We arrived at Montreat, with 22 youth ready to participate in the Youth Conference. This conference has been around for many, many years. I started attending way back in 1990 (and that was nowhere near the first one!); that conference has stuck with me all these years later. I remember the theme (“Just Before Daybreak”), members of my small group 33 (our chant was, “33, you can divide by 11!”), parts of the theme song (“So won’t you meet me just before daybreak, before the morning comes…”), and some of the daily themes. This conference helped to shape who I am and continues to shape me to this day.
As we bring these youth to the conference this week, I am hoping that God will move in their lives and make this a memorable and life changing experience for them. The theme this week is “The Missing Peace.”
Please be in prayer for everyone at the conference. We are sharing this week with 1200 other youth (yes, that is one THOUSAND two hundred youth!) and are looking forward to the Spirit’s work in our lives.
— Adrian Martin