By Noah Harper, GA Tech
Growing up in the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta has always offered me a platform of youthful love through its established programs. Camp Mikell and Happening in particular have been very dear to my heart and I really looked only to these programs to refill my spiritual tank. However, this past weekend I had the absolute pleasure of working alongside several other youth to put on the first ever Diocesan Youth Day Retreat for our diocese.
A day retreat, the events primary purposes was to bring the youth together outside of an established environment such as Camp Mikell. It was meant to teach the youth of Atlanta that we are not only active at camp or Happening, but also throughout the year. At the retreat we discussed the various programs at Emmaus House and the Hunger Walk, where the youth can reconnect and strive to work for our loving Lord’s noble purpose.
What is notable about this retreat was its atmosphere. Mingled throughout the crowd of 200 there were old friends and new friends and maybe even a couple “friends to be.” Despite the wide spectrum of relationship, the love and fun present this past weekend was overpowering. During the singing, the small group time, or the odd game of 9-Square the youth laughed and loved in a harmony comparable to that of only family.
Under the leadership of the wonderful Easton Davis, our youth are striving to become an integral part of this Diocese, and it’s through these new programs that they might come to learn to fill these shoes.
I myself had the most fun just watching. I watched the giggles slip out and the smiles dance on the faces of our youth. Words are insufficient to describe the happiness that pervaded over the Convention this pastSaturday, and I cannot wait to experience it again… and again… and again.