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ELCA Youth Gathering Blog

Transformed Along The Way

– Joshua Serrano

My favorite story from scripture is the disciples walking to Emmaus. It was through traveling and breaking bread together that Jesus showed up and is revealed to them.  In my mind, great stories involve taking a long journey that bring about transformation. For instance, I love the movies Lord of the Rings, Stand By Me, and Wild because the principal actors in each movie travel to a destination and are transformed along the way.

So it is with our ELCA Youth Gathering.

We travel with young energetic high school students who are sharing their lives with each other and hoping meet Jesus on the way. God moves among them because they must band together and learn how to be a supportive community to each other and serve the world at the same time. Through the miles of walking we do, the learning, the service, and the worship, we have Jesus in our midst calling us to see others as he sees them.

I’ve only attended one Gathering and the groups of kids I attended with had good relationships with each other.  My hopefulness tells me that the kids that I’m bringing this time will see Jesus in a new way and seek to bring God’s Kingdom to earth in the communities in which they are involved.

I’m excited that youth gather together and realize that the community of Lutherans they are part of is not as small as they might think. My favorite thing about the community of God is our willingness to travel with youth on their journeys of faith and grow with them as we travel to Houston this summer.


Rev. Joshua Serrano serves Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in San Carlos, CA (South of San Francisco). He’s loves to read, practice Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and talk to people about their faith.  Two kids keep him occupied all the time and continue to teach him to shut up and love life.