Beignets & Youth Gathering Blessings

The blessing invited us to remember that God’s Holy Spirit joyfully challenges us before, during, and after the Youth Gathering.

June 3, 2024 |

Created to be the body of Christ, the North Carolina Synod is more together. On the last day, youth from around North Carolina who will attend the ELCA Youth Gathering in just a few weeks joined Synod Gathering participants to worship, learn, grow, play, and serve.

Following worship and a service opportunity, the afternoon closed with Bishop Tim Smith and Assistant to the Bishop Pastor Cassie Overcash offering a blessing to our youth and adults attending this summer’s 2024 ELCA Youth Gathering. While in New Orleans, they will learn about how we are created to be in God’s image as well as created to be bold, brave, authentic, and disruptive.

During this closing blessing, adults surrounded youth participants and prayed for and with them. The blessing invited the Holy Spirit to teach us that:

  • We are created to be.
  • We are created for relationship.
  • We are created to be disciples.
  • We are created to be authentic.
  • We are created to be changed.

We are created in God’s image to be disciples that change the world, sharing God’s grace. The blessing invited us to remember that God’s Holy Spirit joyfully challenges us before, during, and after the Youth Gathering. The blessing also invites us to remember that we are not alone.

While at the Youth Gathering, youth and adult participants will gather with others from ELCA Region 9 for an afternoon of worship and community. Wearing our 2024 NC Synod “The Lord Be with Y’all” Youth Gathering t-shirts on this day will invite us to continue to be more together as we learn how we are created to be in God’s image. 2024 NC Synod Youth Gathering shirts are provided to all participants, but anyone is welcome to purchase one to support NC Synod Youth and Family Ministry.

Before going home, the Synod Gathering closed with the offering of a delicious dessert: beignets! Topped with lots and lots of powdered sugar, beignets are pastries made of fluffy fried dough. Introduced in the 18th century and hailing from the French- Creole culture, beignets are a staple part of New Orleans culture today. It was only fitting that we enjoyed these yummy, delectable creations before heading back home to be the Church together.

We are certainly blessed that God created us to be North Carolina Synod. May each of you and your congregations find your own joy and blessings as you learn who God is creating you to be. Don’t forget to grab a beignet or three along the way!


Deacon Susan Jackson (St. Paul's, Wilmington) for the NC Synod


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