Alive 2016: A Young Adults Retreat

After many years of praying and envisioning a place where this generation could gather with like-minded individuals, MCYA had its first ever young adults retreat in Olympia, WA on MLK weekend. Gathered were young and old, new and old faces from as far north as Alaska, all the way down the west coast to Visalia. The weekend allowed for plenty of time for rest and play, worship, and encouragement, as well as time for attendees to slow down and meet with God.

Pastor Coby was our speaker for the weekend. He did a remarkable job leading us to listen, reflect and share with one another what the Holy Spirit was revealing.

Session 1: When sin came into this world, it destroyed theunion between God and man. However, through the deathand resurrection of Christ, our relationship is repaired. We are meant to do life together, in community.

Session 2: We are blessed to be a blessing. We are to be salt & light of the earth. That following God takes big risk. That His promises are true and may not look the way we expect it. On the same day, we had an opportunity to reflect on past and current events, whether good or bad, that have shaped our story as we know it today. What a wonderful reminder that our stories do matter.

Session 3: Hope’s name is Jesus. No matter where we go, how hard it may seem, there is hope in the darkness. The same God that hovered over the earth when it was shapeless, formless, and void is the same God who is here today.

Session 4: At the table of God, there is a seat for ALL. To be a Christian is to be on missions. He allows us the privilege to be part of it, to join in. We are called to make disciples as we are going.

On Sunday morning, we were also privileged to partake in a panel discussion. Through their honesty, transparency, and vulnerabilities, individuals heard how God has been working in and through their lives and how they are being made ALIVE in Christ.

Even when raining, Black Lake Bible Camp provided great opportunities for individuals to bask in the beauty of God’s creation. That meant taking solo or group walks around the site, to having 1-on-1 time with different leaders, skipping rocks at the lake, or opportunities for great photos.

During the weekend, individuals engaged in creative worship and prayer as they rested and slowed down. Prayer stations were provided such as: reading and meditating on scripture, meditating on God’s love for us, examining our idols and repenting of them, confessing of our sins, and praying for our nation.

What an astonishing and refreshing weekend we had together. What overwhelming joy it brought to our hearts to hear the young adults singing from the depths of their hearts, yearning for more of God. To be fully engulfed in His presence, drowning out any distractions that would hinder them. Their cries echoed so loudly throughout the room. Intentional communities were formed as individuals were vulnerable in sharing their fears, questions, desires, and hopes with others. What a wonderful glimpse of what God is doing with this generation of young adults.

As each individual’s story unfolds, we can’t wait to witness all the things that God has moved them to do and how they will be a part of what God is already doing in their communities. Each person’s story will be different and unique. There is no cookie cutter way of how God will use these young adults and future generation.

Please continue to pray with us.

Blessings,

The MCYA Team

In Every Season: A Young Adults Conference

Last weekend, MCYA’s “In Every Season: A Young Adult Conference” happened in Richmond, CA. God listened. God spoke. and God moved. // Among the 80+ participants ages 18-30s or higher, our community of faith welcomed every individual with enough grace, love, and mercy to understand that we don’t have it all together but He does – and that should keep us far away from trying to be “perfect” in every way and rather rely on the true God who breathed life into us and calls us His children. Reminding you that You – are a child of God, He – is a child of God, She – is a child of God…and They – are children of God.

Our hope was for our Young Adults to fully understand their gifts and abilities, to encourage them in where they’re at, and love them for who God has made them to be – which I believe God did just that. Our speakers David, Sen, Michael, and Pastor Kristoffer shared stories of how they struggled, responded, and fully love God in the midst of all – to inspire the rest of us on the same journey. Through the testament of their own lives, obedience and faithfulness takes over.

This wouldn’t have happened without your support, prayers, and love. I truly thank you for praying with us for this conference – for I know God has answered every desire and heart that was placed into this event. If you were an attendee, I also thank you for your teachable spirit to walk into this place humbly and ready to hear from God. You are the generation we have been called to serve and our team is ready to move alongside you to what He is calling you to. Let’s stay in touch. xx

– Karen Saechao,
In Every Season: A Young Adult Conference, Event Director

 

Thankful for our keynote speakers who shared their stories as local community leaders.

MCYA Youth Camp 2014 Newsletter

Trying to write this overview of MCYA’s summer youth camp is a lot harder than I imagined it to be. I mean, all I really need to say are things like, “awesome time swimming… love the archery… great seeing and meeting new friends…” and “the grandiose works of God!” I struggle to describe youth camp, life, and God with words because as I reflect, the very things that impacted me most and those things I can actually remember are more so images, feelings, and experiences! Not words! What creeps in is that distant, yet ever so present memory from one of my philosophy professors: “If you can’t put it on paper, then it doesn’t count.” Fine!

Our camp theme this year was “Selfie.” Simple enough, the word points to a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website. Without getting all-profound and stuff, Selfie points to a deeper narcissistic self-absorbed idea. It’s like how we take selfies, and then delete them until we get to the one that we really want for the world to see. Let’s say we were to take a selfie of our soul. The difference is no matter how many times we do a retake of it, it’ll always look the same because that’s the true reflection of who we really are. How do we change ‘who we are’ if we don’t like it? We work on it by allowing God to come in and to show us what’s got. to. go.

Our speaker this year was Pastor Kristoffer Ramos. Pastor Kris loves life. Pastor Kris loves people. And, Pastor Kris loves God more than even his most favorite hobby… rock-climbing. God used him mightily to teach through 3 evening messages:

  • 1. The Gospel. A challenge if we truly do understand the Gospel that we claim to believe in. Scriptural references: Luke 15:1-7; 18:9-14, and 1 Cor 15:1-2
  • 2. Irreverent Silly Myths. Too often as Christian, we don’t really adhere the biblical concept of Christianity and instead, we cater to what is most popular in our current Christian Sub-Culture. Scriptural reference: 1 Timothy 4:1-16
  • 3. Conformed or Transformed? In understanding what the Gospel truly is and what are “irreverent silly myths” vs. what is biblical… the question is, now what? Am I really transformed by the Holy Spirit? Do I really have a “Regenerated Heart” or am I just conforming to the patterns of this world? Scriptural reference: Romans 12:1-2, Jeremiah 17:9

We turn Pastor Kris’ evening messages into in-depth practical learning in the mornings by implementing discussion and sharing times within and amongst campers and their cabin-mates. TJ Saelee (Mr. MC!) led our High School group and Yowty (Antelope) facilitated our Middle Schoolers. These two young men were true vessels in allowing God to speak through them. Pastor Kris taught our Young Adults Program, giving them direction in biblical living.

Ryan Lapid led our praise and worship team with such heart and love that those who were a part of the band left the entire experience refreshed and revitalized. Alan drum’d (Davis), Thim bass’d (Antelope), Joseph press’d keys (YMABC), and those who sang were DK Daniel (also lead our competition games!), Sirena (Visalia), and Faam (Seattle). Thanks, guys.

Our counseling team went through a completely revamped counseling training program led by Perry and Audrey Sakai that revolutionized our understanding of discipleship. Karen and Clara did a splendid job organizing and putting together the team. Lastly, many rededicated their lives to return back living for God.

From our decision cards, we have 2 who accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior with a total of 9 who got baptized. Praise the Lord!

His Best,

Michael Chao

Ministry Director

 

PS- Special shout-out to Evannie and her assistant, Tyler (Portland), for running our sound booth and Melonie for making sure no one drowned in the swimming pool… and during baptism.