This past Sunday, Joyful Life began classes for our 2021-2022 confirmation program. Five youth gathered after church and enjoyed Frito Pie and some other yummy snacks, then played a name game to get to know one another. Next, we jumped into our lesson for the day – an overview of the bible. I do not mean to say we learned everything from Genesis to Revelation in one day! But we did learn about what scripture, canon, translation, and interpretation mean. We learned how to use tools like the table of contents, the difference between a book, a chapter, a verse, and a passage, and how to find any one of those things if I asked them to. We practiced finding verses and reading them aloud. We learned about the language’s scripture was originally written in, and some of the history of how it came together. We got down to the basic, fundamental pieces of interacting with our bible that help us build our lives of faith and relationships with God’s Word. Each confirmand received their own Lutheran Study Bible, workbook, notebook, pencil, Small Catechism, and daily worksheet, and wrote their name in each one so that we will know whose whose is. Next week we will jump into Genesis 1, and week by week we will learn from and with one another as these youth grow in their knowledge and in their faith which they will later confirm.  Confirmation classes are an example of faith in action. Yes, because of the students, and their questions, their learning, their faith growth. But also because of all those who come together to make confirmation classes happen. I planned our curriculum and led us through it. Parents and Grandparents made the time and commitment to bring their confirmands each week, and to wait for them or pick them up after class, and might continue some of the conversations, questions, and discussions throughout the week. Jo Ann put together announcements, gathered interest, and ordered all the books and materials we needed, then set those materials up for our kids to use. Mark helped us to figure out our budget and pay for the materials Jo Ann and I ordered. Gerald volunteered to bring Frito Pie, which Laura helped set up and serve, so the kids could focus better with full stomachs. Keith got our PowerPoint up on the screen and set up a little remote so I can change the slides from the front of the sanctuary. Marci served as my co-teacher, helping the kids to learn how to find various bible verses, one-on-one. Stephanie helped shut off the projector, the lights, and all the tech stuff I would have no idea how to do. Anita and her whole family helped to clean up and take out the trash from our snacks, as Trinity asked some great faith questions that we discussed as we cleaned and left. And I am sure there are others I have missed! These are all ways in which we live out our faith, by using our God given gifts to love and care for those around us, working together as a community to develop a new generation of disciples. I am so thankful for all the ways God has gifted our community with servant hearts, and I look forward to all the ways we will continue to live out our lives of discipleship, through confirmation, and through all that we do in Jesus’ name. 
Pastor Amanda

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