By Barb Mazarakos
The life of a teenager can be a busy one: school, sports, jobs, friends, and social activities can fill a calendar in no time. Fortunately, for many young people church remains a priority and fills a good portion of that schedule. Parents and teens alike understand the importance of keeping God front and center in their lives and reflect His light to the community by being involved in groups just like the LYTES (junior high) and VOYAGERS (high school) right here at CLC.
For me personally, I think of my time in the youth group (as it was simply known before it became VOYAGERS) as a sort of saving grace. Encouraged by friends to go, I went the first time to get them to leave me alone about it. I was fine, after all. My calendar was full, I had friends, and I went to church. I didn’t “need” this. At least, that’s what I thought then. But as with so many other times in my life, God was speaking to me in ways I didn’t even realize. Soon this group I didn’t “need” became the focal point of my social time. I made good friends, I became more involved as a youth and eventually an adult leader, and I learned more about my faith than I ever knew I was missing. Without those lessons in service, humility (have you ever trekked on a bus without air conditioning to Texas in July with 50 other people? It’s a lesson in perseverance for sure!), and God’s love I’m not sure I would have come through those teen years quite as unscathed.
I was thrilled to hear that, with the guidance of some wonderfully dedicated adults, the LYTES and VOYAGERS programs here at Christ Lutheran are running as strong as ever. In just a few weeks they will be continuing the tradition of preparing and serving breakfast on Easter morning for the congregation. A spread of pancakes, egg strata, sausage, muffins and fruit will be available in the gym of Ledogar Hall from 8-9am for a free will offering. Other upcoming events include a trip to volunteer with Feed My Starving Children in Libertyville on April 29, Great America on June 25 (8th grade and VOYAGERS) and a summer service trip to Indianapolis from July 9-14 (also for 8th grade and VOYAGER aged students).
With a full schedule of upcoming activities, the Board of Youth could always use new members. Current leaders Kathi Sterling and Jason Borgstahl would be happy to talk with anyone interested in helping our youth strengthen their relationship with the Lord. For some kids, it could literally be the difference maker in the path they take to adulthood. Are you moved to help them walk it? Then take the step to help them reflect the light of God to the world. You will be so glad that you did, and the impact you have will stay with them for years to come.