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August 24, 2010

Youth Gathering Participants Challenged to Share the Seeds of Grace and Mercy Widely

“Do you love God enough to just throw it all away?” was the question youth were challenged with as they were sent from the 2010 Canadian Lutheran Anglican Youth (CLAY) Gathering to go back to their families, congregations, and communities and “throw away” the seeds of grace and mercy received from God.

In this final of six Large Group Gatherings, CLAY 2010 participants heard the Parable of the Sower. “The seeds are precious. Seeds are life itself,” said keynote speaker The Rev’d Canon William Cliff, Rector of The Collegiate Chapel of St. John the Evangelist, Huron College, and parish priest for Huron University College and the Anglican Community at the University of Western Ontario. “[The seeds are] your hope, your future, your body, mind and soul. It is God who gives them growth. It is our job to throw away the grace and mercy [the seeds] we have received.” Cliff encouraged youth to share the seeds they have received from God and “cast them widely.”

“This is my prayer for you. Will you please be foolish with it?” Cliff pleaded, once again referring to the seeds of grace and mercy given by God. “It is terrifying [but] trust that there is just enough, more than enough, for you and all your needs.”

Throughout CLAY 2010, youth have heard the message of how they can be “hands on,” the theme of the gathering, and be more involved in God’s work, reaching out, passing on God’s grace, and transforming lives.

In addition to large group gathering times, participants attended forums, had time together in their Home Team groups, worshiped together and were “hands on” at a servant event in which they helped create “We Care” packages made up of essential items such as toiletries and warm socks. The youth participants donated the 10,878 items which were packaged into 582 “We Care” kits assembled at the gathering. The kits will be donated throughout the London, Ontario community through programs at Daily Bread and The Fellowship Centre.

CLAY 2010 took place August 19-22 in London, Ontario. The gathering takes place every two years and involves youth between the ages of 14-19. This was the first joint gathering between the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada and Anglican Church of Canada. It was attended by almost 1000 youth.

The 2012 Canadian Lutheran Anglican Youth gathering will take place is Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Further information on the gathering, along with highlights, are available on the CLAY website at www.clay2010.ca and on the Facebook page for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.

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The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada is Canada's largest Lutheran denomination with 152,500 baptized members in 607 congregations. It is a member of the Lutheran World Federation, the Canadian Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches.

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