Army Youth Glows
03 July 2015
A NEON-clad youth gathering aimed at 11- to 16-year-olds – led by ALOVE, the United Kingdom Territory with the Republic of Ireland’s Youth Department – held its first meeting on Thursday 2 July, themed ‘An Army that Truly Reflects the Mind of Jesus’, with speaker Major Janet Robson and the Bill Booth Theater Company.
Friday’s meeting, titled ‘A Multicultural Army’, focused on embracing diversity. It opened with teenagers dividing up by home country to play games, including a language challenge and ‘just dance’ session.
One of NEON’s guest artists for the day was Te Ope Whakaora, performing a Kapa haka Polynesian dance to ‘I’ll Fight’. Following the performance, the group gave delegates a brief history of the Haka dance as well as a dance lesson.
Three songs – ‘Blessed be your Name’, ‘This is Amazing Grace’ and ‘Ancient of Days’ – were featured as 2nd Mile led worship.
‘We get to see that The Salvation Army is made up of many ethnic and cultural groups,’ Major Robson, International Headquarters Children’s and Youth Coordinator, said in her message of the international experience at Boundless. ‘I think we can celebrate our diversity and the ways we are all different.’
She challenged attendees to celebrate the Army’s diversity and commit to its unity, and stressed the importance of love without discrimination, referring to John 3:16.
‘God loves us all without discrimination,’ Janet said. ‘We are all equally in need of that love. He needs us to love each other that same way.’
Each teen received a puzzle piece to write their name on the back of and to give to someone they had never met before.
Finally, ‘Glozones’ allowed everyone to engage in activities together.
Today’s NEON meeting at 2pm will focus on ‘A Serving Army’ with speaker Major Danielle Strickland and guests the Bill Booth Theater Company, Shaw Coleman and Vasa Gospel Choir.
This article was included in issue four of Boundless Today. Click to read all issues of Boundless Today.