Glasgow and Irvine Global Youth Day
6th April 2018
Despite the cold, rain and periods of snow, youth from Glasgow and Irvine Seventh-day Adventist church gathered together on Global Youth Day 2018 (Sabbath 17 March) with the eagerness to go out into the community and reach out to the people of Glasgow.
Equipped with fresh fruit, water and gifts for the homeless, they set out to Sauchiehall Street, one of the busiest streets in Glasgow, determined to 'be the sermon'. Whilst some were promoting a healthier way of living by giving out fresh fruit and water, others were attracting large crowds with their songs. It was not long before the questions began to flow. What church do you attend? Where can I find the song you are singing? Can I join your youth group?
The perfect opportunity arose for the youth to be the sermon; and from singing they began explaining their beliefs and sparking an interest in the city of Glasgow. Even as the weather conditions deteriorated, the songs they sang brought warmth to the hearts of the people.
Walking past with a handful of shopping, a person stopped and said, "It's great to see young people being brave and strong and doing good for the community." An example has been set that all should strive to follow. One song can reach many.
While one part of the Global Youth team was giving out fruit and water to passersby, the other part of the team was taking food, raincoats, warm socks and gloves to the homeless.
The ministry to the homeless was initiated by Paul, our recently baptised member. Even before his baptism Paul had been going out on the streets at least once a week to meet the homeless people there, talking, bringing food and warm clothes. He knows each of them by name and has become a friend to them.
His commitment and enthusiasm inspired us to include his ministry in our outreach project on Global Youth Day. Indeed, it was an enriching experience. We were not only meeting the basic needs of people in our city, but most importantly we were meeting the people themselves and getting to know them as friends. "I had an amazing experience," says a young man from the team, "I was talking to a homeless person about the Bible, and it appears to me he knows more than I do. It was a very inspiring discussion!"
"The weather conditions may not have been on our side, but each person was willing and enthusiastic about serving the community of Glasgow", said the Youth leader. Every moment, they were inspiring many and giving strength and hope to others. Perhaps the best testimony came when a young girl briefly joined the project and offered to be involved with the church in future community programmes.
Be an example, be the sermon.
[Benjamin Bakina, Stanley Buffonge and Lisa Mihailova]