150 Washington Youth Get to 'Be the Sermon'
Each year, the General Conference sets aside the third Sabbath in March as Global Youth Day, during which Adventist young people come together and impact their communities. Instead of going to church to listen to a sermon, they go outside to “be the sermon.”
On March 16, 2019, nearly 150 Adventist youth from western Washington came together to show love to the city of Kirkland, helping to make a cleaner, safer and more enjoyable experiences for people visiting parks or young people receiving help and training to achieve their potential.
Several groups assisted Green Kirkland Partnership, which works to engage the local community in the restoration and care of natural areas in Kirkland parks. Another team was sent to do restoration and cleaning projects for the Boys and Girls Club of King County as well.
“I didn't know the extent of your community service, which is great. … It’s so great to know that you guys are out there and this is your mission, and I look forward to fostering a lifelong relationship with you guys,” Lauren Calabro, Kirkland Boys and Girls Club teen director, told the groups.
Washington youth not only made an impact now but will leave a sweeter atmosphere after they’ve left. A child’s smile is wider, a person jogs with more peace and couples walking focus more on each other because the trails and parks are clean and more beautiful. These restoration and beautification projects leave footprints to show glimpses of God’s heart toward all His children. These youth replaced grass, plants and trees for concrete and buildings, and these parks provide remnants of God's love and His artistic affection.
“It was a wonderful day of service … full of smiles, good company, sun and lots of terrific environmental stewardship,” says Jeremy Jones, Green Kirkland Partnership coordinator of Kirkland’s parks and community services. “All of our volunteer Green Kirkland stewards, parks and Green Kirkland staff were so grateful for your team’s positive energy and willingness to dive into any project. Our parks and communities are a better place today because of your teams.”
Youth don’t just want to be involved — they want to make a difference. As a worldwide church family, Adventist youth have many opportunities to be the sermon to the world.