A circuit group of 10 young people and three leaders, Rev Katherine Pickering, Ian Pickering and Graham Ifill, had a fantastic time at 3Generate, the national Methodist weekend for children and young people, 24-26 November, held this year at Pontins in Southport.
We joined up with the group from Witney High St Methodist Church and travelled together by train from Didcot. The journey was quite an adventure and it took 4 trains and a short coach ride to get us there. But it was worth it! The weekend was fun, inspiring and challenging and also very cold! It must have been the coldest weekend of the year in Southport with icy winds, hail and rain and yet everyone had a thoroughly good time! There were over 1000 children and young adults aged 8-23 and more than 600 leaders taking part.
There were many options to choose from and one of our group said he wished he could stay for a week to have time to do everything! The children participated in: worship, gospel singing, "tricky" bikes, swimming, computer games, a silent disco(!), messy science, faith challenges, voting for the new Methodist youth president and learning in various workshops how to be "agents of change" by engaging with some of the social and global issues of our world.
Late on Saturday evening our group met together for a time of "chalet worship" sharing thoughts, prayers and reflective comments about the weekend. Each group was given a "worship bag" containing a selection of craft materials and a challenge to choose a favourite Bible story (the children could have covered the whole Bible!) and then use the paper, clay, sticks and pipe cleaners to show a scene from the story. In less than an hour, interspersed with hot drinks, snacks and prayers, the group had completed a wonderful model of Moses and the burning bush, illuminated by some finger torches, acquired at the urban praise session earlier in the evening.
We concluded with prayers, sitting by the torchlight around the glowing burning bush, knowing we were in the presence of Jesus the light of the world who wants us all to be his light in our world.