Youth, leaders seek support for CLAY trip

Bishop's youht Ministry Committee display table.
Nancy Hannah staffs the Bishop’s Youth Ministry Committee table at last year’s Synod. Synod members played a game that raised $2,800 to send youth and youth leaders from the diocese to CLAY 2020
 on April 1, 2020
Michael Hudson

Lutherans, Anglicans heading to Calgary in August

About 25 youth and youth leaders in the diocese plan to travel to Calgary this summer to take part in one of the biggest Christian youth gatherings in the country. But first they need some help to get there.

The group will be attending CLAY 2020, a gathering of Lutheran and Anglican youth held every two years. The event, held Aug. 20-23 at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, is expected to draw about 1,000 people from across Canada.

“It will be an incredibly empowering experience for our youth to connect with others and to feel they’re not alone,” says Nancy Hannah, a member of the Bishop’s Youth Ministry Committee, which is spearheading efforts in the diocese.

Ms. Hannah, who is the youth ministry coordinator for York-Simcoe and the youth and family minister at St. David’s Anglican Lutheran Church in Orillia, says it’s important for Christian youth to get together. “Connection is so important to them, because quite often their faith is not supported in other areas of their lives.”

CLAY 2020 will feature worship, leadership development opportunities and social events. Participants will also learn about youth homelessness and how to advocate for change in their communities. “They’ll be able to speak as one voice from coast to coast to coast, and that will have an enormous impact,” she says.

Since last year, the Bishop’s Youth Ministry Committee has been encouraging parishes in the diocese to send their youth to the gathering and to financially assist those who are going. The cost per person is about $1,100, which covers registration and airfare.

Participants have been trying to raise the money themselves, but for some it’s a tall order. “It’s a lot of money to ask families to come up with,” admits Ms. Hannah. “For every youth I know who is going, finances are going to be a barrier.”

To help with the costs, the committee raised $2,800 at last year’s Synod. It has also received $5,000 from the Bishop’s Company. The episcopal areas have pledged support, as have churches – even those without youth ministry. “Even though they don’t have youth ministry of their own, they’re very encouraged by what we’re doing and want to help us,” says Ms. Hannah.

She says the support from the diocese, the episcopal areas and the churches has been encouraging. “It’s really great for the youth to feel supported by their Church as a whole. It means that the wider Church cares about youth and what they’re doing.”

The fundraising effort is about half-way to its goal. She’s hoping that individuals and churches that haven’t already donated will do so. “The experience of going to CLAY will make an enormous difference in the lives of these young people,” she says.

Donations to send youth and youth leaders from the diocese to CLAY 2020 can be made online at When completing the form, write “CLAY” in the comments section and the funds will be designated to the Bishop’s Youth Ministry Committee.

For more information on sending youth and youth leaders to CLAY 2020, contact the youth ministry coordinator in your episcopal area:



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