About LYO (Lutheran Youth Organization)
Open to All Youth
The Lutheran Youth Organization (LYO) of the NC Synod is open to all youth in grades 6-12. Youth are members by virtue of being a member of any NC Synod ELCA congregation.
The strength of LYO in North Carolina comes from the youth themselves. LYO is always youth-planned and youth-led. Adult advisors work hard to create an environment that nurtures and grows faith and develops all youth as leaders.
LYO Assembly: February 23-25, 2024
Every year, Lutheran youth across North Carolina gather in February for an assembly. At LYO Assembly, youth spend time with each other in small groups, singing with the band and growing in faith.
BEFORE YOU REGISTER—All participants, youth and adult, will register individually this year. Youth leaders will receive an email notifying them of each completed registration. Make sure you have the correct email for your youth leader BEFORE you register.
The Church is a place of belonging for everyone, no matter what!
2024 LYO Theme: Y'all Means All
The LYO board chose the theme "Y'all Means All" because they wanted to ensure that all NC Synod youth know that the Church is a place of belonging for everyone, no matter what!
Over the course of the weekend, the theme will explore the following conversation topics:
- Difficult conversations
- Friendship and Bullying
- Intersectionality (high school) and Identity (middle school)
- Differences in Opinion
It's the hope of LYO leadership that as we talk about the theme—from difficult conversations to differences in opinion—we might come together and remember that in the waters of baptism Y’all Means All!
All participants, youth and adult, will register individually this year. Youth leaders will receive an email notifying them of each completed registration. Make sure you have the correct email for your youth leader BEFORE you register.
Adult Leader and Parent Meeting
Youth leaders and parents are invited to learn more about the theme in a Zoom call January 11 at 7 pm.
You must register in order to attend.
Bishop in the Hot Seat
Got a question for the Bishop?
A favorite of LYO Assembly is always "Bishop in the Hot Seat"—a time when LYO attendees ask the NC Synod Bishop any of their questions.
While Bishop Tim Smith will be on sabbatical this February, Pastor CeCee Mills will be the Acting Bishop and at LYO Assembly to tackle NC Synod youth's most burning question.
Here are a few of last year's questions:
"Duke or North Carolina?"
"Do you believe in ghosts?"
"How do we encourage older generations to listen to young people?"
"Why does God let bad happen?"
What to Know Before Registering
- Required for Adults: Safe Gatherings
Adults need to have Safe Gatherings certification to attend; this includes a background check. You can learn more about that and complete that here: https://safegatherings.com/app/login
- Individual Registrations:
This year, individual participants will register with the synod. Youth leaders will receive an email with details each registration from their congregation. All registering individuals should have the leader's current email prior to beginning the registration.
- Payment: Group Invoice
Payment will not be accepted at the time of registration. Each congregation will receive an invoice by email or mail.
- Insurance/health waiver:
The registration form includes the health waiver for this event. This provides information needed to seek emergency care if necessary. Those without health insurance should write N/A.
Lexi Barnhill, synod event coordinator, will be coordinating the housing for this event; if you have specific needs for your group, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Registration Deadline: Thursday, February 1
For LYO content and board-related questions, contact Pastor James Demmel, Pasor Cassie Overcash, or Pastor Melody Simpkins.
Join together in holy conversation to remember that in the waters of baptism:
Y’all Means All!
Hannah Rochester (president)
Lilly Dangerfield (vice-president)
Hannah Covell (secretary)
Kaitlyn Losh (communications liaison)
LYO Adult Leadership
LYO Board Advisor:
Pastor James Demmel
NC Synod Staff:
Pastor Melody Simpkins
Pastor Danielle DeNise
Pastor Cassie Overcash
Follow the LYO Board on Instagram!
What's TikTok Tell It?
the challenge from this year's planning team: tell a story from Scripture that highlights the themes of welcome, hospitality, and/or inclusion. With Christ, y'all means all!
the deadline: Monday, February 12, 2024
the voting: youth groups attending the 2024 LYO Assembly vote on their favorite entries
the prizes: three youth groups win a cash prize
the platform: TikTok
the length: all entries less than 2 minutes
the details: please read the Contest Guidelines to learn all-the-things!