Young Adults in Global Mission

Cancellation of YAGM Program

[Ed. Note: Excerpt of letter from Rev. Dr. Rafael Malpica Padilla, January 28]

We are communicating to you the difficult news that we have decided to cancel our 2021-2022 year of service for the Young Adults in Global Mission program. This means we will not be sending volunteers into service this year, resulting in two years in a row with no active volunteers.
As you might guess, this decision is due to the continued uncertainties and difficulties presented by COVID-19, and its variants. In our mission partnerships, our first priority is the health and safety of our companions and hosts, and also that of our volunteers. With heightened travel restrictions, changing variants, and growing number of cases in many parts of the world, we are not able to guarantee the safety and stability of another program year.

The ELCA’s Young Adults in Global Mission program is a one-year, international service-learning and faith-formation opportunity in churches and social service ministries for young adults, ages 21-29.

Update: While YAGM will not be sending volunteers for the 2020-21 program year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we plan to resume sending volunteers this year in August 2021. Applications will be open from Nov. 1, 2020, to Jan. 15, 2021.

Nine Young Adults from our synod served in 2020 in their respective sites until they were called home due to COVID-19. We pray for those who were unable to finish serving.

The ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission program invites ELCA young adults ages 21-29 into a transformative, year-long journey in international service. ELCA young adults are shaped by the witness of our global neighbors as they share in the journeys of companion churches and organizations in one of ten countries around the world.

Young adults become the hands and feet of Jesus in the world, providing critical support to ministries and projects in communities of need. Volunteers are invited into a journey of self-reflection, providing space to consider their sense of identity, God’s work in the world, and their place within it all.

Young adults serve in the spirit of accompaniment, walking alongside global companions in a manner that practices mutuality, interdependence, and solidarity. Areas of service include health and development, education, addiction recovery, women’s issues, and more. All site placements provide opportunities for volunteers to confront issues of wealth and poverty, racial privilege, economic disparity, and globalization—all through the lens of faith.