The 2011 Assyrian Church of the East Annual Youth Conference, hosted by St. Mary Parish of Los Angeles, California has proudly celebrated its silver anniversary.
The conference, held from 29 June-4 July at the Warner Center Marriott, hosted 300 youth members along with several priests from different parishes around the nation.
Attendees were honored with the presence of His Beatitude Dr. Mar Aprem, Metropolitan of Malabar and India; His Grace Mar Aprim Khamis, Bishop of Western USA; His Grace Mar Awa Royel, Bishop of California; and Sister Dr. Jincy of India.
This year’s conference theme was “Transformation”, with the focus on Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Leading the bible study sessions were Fr. Gewargis Toma of Chicago, Illinois; Fr. Genard Lazar of Sydney, Australia; Fr. Lawrence Namato of San Jose, California; and Sh. James Darmo of Los Angeles, California.
On Friday, His Beatitude Mar Aprem presented his speech on our churches of India, followed by Sister Dr. Jincy who presented her speech on the promotion of the vocation of Monastic life in our church.
In the evening, St. Mary youth hosted an elegant banquet dinner held at the Marriott Banquet Hall during which each youth participant was awarded a medal of honor along with two newly published books, one of which is written by His Grace Mar Awa Royel and titled Mysteries of the Kingdom, written to educate about the seven sacraments of our Church.
After a day-long trip to the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California on Saturday, the youth dedicated Sunday to numerous events.
Before commencing Sunday morning mass, the ordination of two Readers took place, one of whom was a youth conference participant, Robert Ishoo.
A goodbye picnic was held at Lake Balboa Park, followed by an evening of hors d’oeuvres by the pool, friendly games in the banquet hall and a closing prayer by Fr. Gewargis Rasho.
Youth conference is about building a strong and everlasting relationship with Jesus Christ. We hope that every youth member went home with a new spiritual outlook on life.[nggallery id=229]