Advent Devotional – Sunday, November 29

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Youth Coordinator Heidi Lewis and the youth enjoy an online game at a recent youth group meet-up via Zoom.

Week 1 – November 29 – Surviving the Pandemic

Reflector: Youth Group Discussion with Connie Takamine

This year we are trying something new. We felt it was important to have input from all folks of all ages. We have tried to recruit youth writers in the past, but they are busy and such an assignment can be intimidating. Not even all adults will accept such an assignment! Connie Takamine met with the youth and had a discussion with them about the Advent Devotional topics. Each week we will have her distillation of that discussion. We can be so proud of our youth; they are bright, perceptive, developing their own opinions, committed, and have a strong sense of responsibility. It is important to hear their voices. The only caveat is that Connie’s voice may also creep in sometimes.

While everyone has been impacted by the pandemic, it has hit the youth particularly hard. Even though very few of our youth have had direct contact with anyone who has experienced COVID 19, their lives have been disrupted, mainly their schooling. They have had to adjust to new remote learning, and being away from their peers and teachers. Some have started in-person school a day or two only to be pulled back due to an uptick in virus infections. Most are very tech savvy but find virtual schooling more difficult because there are more distractions and concentration can be hard. They are also missing interaction and communal learning, and some have limited contact with their teachers.

But our youth are resilient. They also look at the bright side. They have appreciated having more family bonding time, but most of all they relish in being able to get more sleep! Some also travel a distance to special schools, and it has alleviated stress to not have to make that commute.

I shared with the youth that they are living in a historic time, and it is important that they keep some of their thoughts and feelings about this time for remembrance when they get old like me.

Prayer: God, we thank you for the gift of the youth of our church. They have had to endure disruption to their lives; may it be a learning opportunity, and not a setback. May the adults in their lives give them support and encouragement to help them build their faith. Amen.