Over 100 people from the Sheffield Methodist District joined thousands of other children and young people at 3Generate, the children's and youth assembly of the Methodist Church at the NEC in Birmingham.
Youth groups and leaders from around our district took part in the action-packed weekend in October and experienced all 3Generate had to offer.
The NEC was split into a number of different zones, where lots of activities took place including the Health and Wellbeing area, the Arts centre, Hope and Anchor, Immersive Art Space, Sensory Space, The Arena, The Globe, The Great Outdoors, The Park, The Rec, The Tech Hub, The Wilderness, the Theatre Royal and the Town Hall.
Activities included, a creative writing workshop, therapy dogs, singalong karaoke, a clay workshop, mindful movement, story time, Power of Drums, School of Rock, supporting the environment, tandem bikes, a park run, stand up comedy plus much more.
Everyone was also encouraged to take part in different styles of worship including the Metal Methodist, Big Worship – a picnic in the park, discover God in play, Fischy worship music, active worship in the Globe about the story of the feeding the 5,000 and a late-night communion.
The event is not just for the children and young people, the leaders also had their own space called The Well where they could relax and take part in workshops to help them be more equipped to support their young people. Vic Loveday the District Children's and Youth Co-ordinator served as part of the team in The Well.
3Generate is open to all aged 8-23-years old and aims to create an inclusive and diverse space for the prophetic voice of children and young people to emerge and be heard. It enables them to speak courageously, and listen to God and each other. Through the 3Generate process, children and young people are equipped to become participants in advocacy, change and growth and have an impact in their local Methodist communities. 3Generate calls the Church to listen to, and be in relationship and dialogue with and amongst, children and young people, so that change can happen together as a community.
Mark from Derbyshire North East Circuit said: "I enjoyed 3gen as it felt good to be with other people from the church and others from around the country and I liked finding out what is happening for the young people across the Methodist Church and I enjoyed the drama quiz a lot."
Sophie from Rotherhem and Dearne Valley Circuits said: "I loved how inclusive it was for everyone."
Gen from Barnsley Circuit said: "The amazing weekend of 3Generate isn't just a place to explore your faith and have a deeper connection with God and Jesus, but also a great time to make new friends and let off a bit steam."
Vic Loveday, District Children and Youth Co-ordinator said: "It was fantastic to have almost doubled the number of people who attended 3Generate compared to last year, and it's great to see how much the young people enjoy being together and learning they are part of a larger church family.
"Thank you to the district for covering the costs of the transport and for circuits and churches who support their young people with funding, which makes the trip affordable for more families.
"The full programme of activities meant there was always something take part in or learn a new skill and there was such a great variety allowing inclusivity for all.
"This was the largest gathering of 3gen so far and it's such an awesome thing for our young people to be involved with.
"Plans have already started for next year and I can't wait to see how many more young people choose to tune in with God through 3gen."
3Generate will take place again between 4th-6th October 2024.