NEC Youth Day 2018
14th March 2018
On the same thematic vein as the General Conference Youth department for 2018, the North England Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Youth chose 'Leadership' as the theme of the NEC Youth Day 2018. The keynote speaker for the day was the General Conference Youth Director, Pastor Gary Blanchard who preached a sermon entitled 'On the Shoulders of Giants'. Pastor Blanchard did a fantastic job in his messages in the morning and afternoon at highlighting key principles of leadership from the Bible as well as using examples from history and contemporary life. His energetic delivery style kept the young people engaged throughout his presentations.
Young people travelled from near and far with almost every city in the North England Conference represented. Birmingham, Wolverhampton, West Bromwich, Coventry, Northampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Sheffield, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Derby, Leicester, Huddersfield to name a few. We were also blessed to have a coach full of youth from Area 1 travel all the way from Newcastle and Middlesbrough that left at 4:45 am!
One of the notable features of the day was when the NEC Youth director Pastor Adam Ramdin invited all the previous Youth directors of the NEC who had served over the last 50 years to share a memorable occurrence during their term. This was a huge show of appreciation, thanks and acknowledgement of these leaders on whose shoulders and legacy the youth are perched. Not all were able to attend, but of those who did were Pastors Jim Huzzey, Bryan Webster, Cyril Sweeney, Steve Palmer and Alan Hush. Pastors Bob Rodd and Theo Webster sent messages via email and video to be shared on the day. The youth were also privileged to have the Trans-European Division Youth director, Pastor Zlatko Musija and the British Union Conference Youth Director, Pastor Dejan Stojkovic in attendance on the day.
It was good to see the NEC President, Pastor Richard Jackson who made a point to be in attendance and support the young people. One of the special meetings on the day was a Youth Leaders' Networking session that was held during the lunch period. Here the Youth leaders got a chance to hear advice from the various Youth directors who were there as well as words of encouragement from the NEC President.
After lunch the service took the format of a 'TED Talk' style with several short presentations on a variety of relevant subjects. Adam Hazel shared on the subject of 'A Message to my Younger Self'; Leon Fuller spoke about 'RealTalks', a project of the Handsworth Youth department; Pastor Adam Ramdin spoke on 'Identity: Being Christ Centred'; Pastor Alan Hush spoke on leadership and drew lessons from the life of Joseph and Pastor Gary Blanchard spoke on lessons Youth leaders need to know as well as sharing about some of the GC Youth initiatives such as One Year in Mission and Global Youth Day.
The programme ended with a short concert in the evening where we were blessed by items from singers and musicians from around the NEC such as Destiny Malcom, Leeds Youth Choir and the Worcester Youth Orchestra. Throughout the day there were several ministry booths that offered various opportunity for mission and resources for people to connect with.
[Lungani Sibanda and Adam Ramdin]