A number of years have passed since the last GYS encounter in 2015. Without question it was a unique experience that radically affected how I see the world.
GYS provides one with the opportunity to really open our eyes to the fact that behind all those countries that appear on the map there are brothers and sisters in faith living in diverse social, economic and political contexts. These contexts are the backdrop for specific challenges in each region to which God is responding in unique ways.
GYS has challenged me as a leader in my country to transmit what it really means to be an Anabaptist youth, and how to be the hands and feet of Jesus in our communities by identifying the needs around us rather than looking the other way. We are challenged to be part of the transformation by carrying out projects that contribute to a solution.
My prayer life has also been affected by the urgency of the cries of our brothers and sisters around the world. With more fervour than ever, we create spaces in our local churches where we pray for the nations. God has set my heart alight with a passion for the people who have not yet been reached and also for mission in general.
At the moment, I am actively involved in my local church as a leader to the youth and adolescents. I also serve in outreach to native peoples in my country, and I have a desire to enter the international mission field.
GYS has been a bridge that has connected me to other people who have been a great blessing in my life. It has also connected me to projects and experiences that have enriched my life and my faith community.
Thanks to what I learned from being a GYS delegate, I want to motivate churches to encourage and support youth that wish to participate in YABs activities. They really are one of a kind spaces that can mark our lives, enabling us to connect with the richness and diversity present in our global family.
In this way, we complement one another and become the body of Christ. As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 12:12: “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.”
I also want to leave the youth with a special message: do not grow weary.
Let us remain united and strong in the midst of this pandemic that we are forced to live through.
Let’s get involved and work with our communities to respond to today’s challenges to “be the church” now, and also think anew about how we will do this in the future.
The Young AnaBaptists (YABs) Committee connects with young Anabaptists (ages 18–30) through Bible discussion, worship, prayer and the sharing of stories – and once every six years through the Global Youth Summit (GYS).
Click here to learn more about GYS.
The 5th annual YABs Fellowship Week is 14–21 June 2020. During this week, youth and young adult groups from all over the world encourage each other and celebrate as one young adult Anabaptist community. We do this together by sharing prayer requests and praise with each other, as well as discussing Scripture based on our theme: “Purpose: God’s and ours” (2 Timothy 1:6–14).
Click here to download the worship resource package.
How did you celebrate YABs Fellowship Week? Click here to submit your story and photos.
—Karina Bogarin is a member of Iglesia Maranata de los Hermanos Menonitas. She was a delegate for Convencion Evangelica de Iglesias Paraguayas Hermanos Menonitas at the Global Youth Summit in Pennsylvania in 2015.