As the Team Leader of MYLE (Multicultural Youth Leadership Event) and group of amazing leaders of color who I am graciously working alongside, we want everyone to know what MYLE is so that this life changing opportunity for our youth of color can experience a Beloved Community like no other.

So, what is MYLE?  

MYLE is a pre-event to the ELCA Youth Gathering for our youth of color that works to nurture community and inspire healing with all our participants, leaders and volunteers. We see an ELCA that is full of ethnic cultures that are rich in community and family bonds. We want to characterize these relationships by equity, difference, mutuality, communion and oneness. We hope that #MYLE2022 is an exciting Spirit-Inspired community, inclusive and accountable to all. It is a time to celebrate our cultures together and breathe Spirit into our own healing.  

How does MYLE do all that?

There is a lot of planning to create an event such as MYLE. We have a team to create a multi-cultured worship and music experience at the start and end of each day. A chaplaincy team to help establish relationships before people arrive and during the event so they have someone to reach out to if they need and find ways to help our youth grow their faith with various activities. Another way of meeting the care needs of our participants is our Safety team. They not only will look out for your physical well-being; they are there to create safe spaces for mental health, sensory, LGBTQIA+ and more.  

We also recognize that there is so much to learn when it comes to being in a space such as MYLE that will be celebrating the ethnic diversity that our participants and their leaders bring. So, the leaders at MYLE are planning for intentional spaces together with trainings and opportunities to address these needs that our Cultural Awareness, Immersion Day, Community Life and Curriculum teams are creating. 

There are many aspects to creating an intentional Beloved Community such as MYLE. I am humbled by the leaders that have come together that represent all of the ELCA’s ethnic ministries to create a community that can be a pathway for healing and brings a time for celebrating the diverse expressions and many facets of our community which are woven through the Holy Spirit. I can’t wait to see you all at the University of St. Thomas next summer for #MYLE2022!

Kelly Sherman-Conroy is a PhD student at Luther Seminary, serves at the Minister of Social Justice & Advocacy for Children, Youth and Family in NE Minneapolis, and she also serves on the Executive Committee of the American Indian/Alaska Native Lutheran Assoc. Inc, and the ELCA Committee for Authentic Diversity. She is the proud mother of a 8-year-old son.