We’re the youth of Liberty Crossings, a United Methodist church in Liberty Park. Most of us attend Liberty Park Middle School and Vestavia Hills High School but we also have students at International Baccalaureate and Homewood High. Any youth grades 6-12 is welcome to join us. We’re trying to create something beautiful for God, in our church, families, schools, neighborhood, and in ourselves. We hope you will join us on this journey.
Senior High Students
|Ann Emory Harris|
Junior High Students
College Age and Young Adult Volunteers
Discovery is a weekend spiritual formation event for our youth. The senior highs and adults of the church serve as leaders of the weekend and lead the junior highs into a deeper relationship with Christ. There will be fun music, skits and games as well as talks by senior highs, small group discussions and times for worship and prayer. We believe Discovery will transform the lives of the youth involved as well as transform the life of our church.
Whether you have been active youth or parent or not, you are invited to participate. Everyone is invited to experience the love of God and find out how much God has to say.
Cost and Packing List
The cost of Discovery Weekend is $75 per junior high student. Senior highs who help out are not charged. The event begins Friday, January 21st at 7 pm and ends just after church on Sunday, January 23rd. We will provide food, activities and supplies. Youth just need to bring their Bible, sleeping bag, pillow, casual clothes, and toiletries. Junior highs will sleep in the church each night with adult chaperons and senior highs will stay with host families in the neighborhood.
How to sign up
You can contact me at the church any time. I hope you will join us for this wonderful experience. You will be glad you did!
For parents, this is such an important and formative event in the faith journey of your child, that we expect everyone to help in some way. Whether you can stay all weekend or can gather supplies ahead of time, we need your help.
To volunteer, contact Lisa Bramer at email@example.com.
If you or your child is attending the Centered Retreat at Sumatanga this weekend, here’s a checklist as you prepare:
_ Check for $75 (made out to Liberty Crossings UMC). Turn this in at the church office. No youth will be able to travel with our group without payment received.
_ Completed Medical Release & Permission Form. Available in the lobby of the church. No youth will be able to travel with our group without a completed form.
_ Packing List for Camp: Bible, hiking shoes, warm clothes, towel, personal toiletries, shower shoes/flip flops, flashlight, pillow, sleeping bag or single bed sheets and blanket, 2 snacks for sharing over the weekend (2 liter drink, chips, cookies, etc.)
_ We will meet in the church parking lot around 6 pm.We will return after lunch on Sunday.
_ Camp Sumatanga is located at 3616 Sumatanga Road, Gallant, AL 35972, which is about an hour northeast of Birmingham. It is fully accredited by the American Camping Association and is affiliated with the North Alabama Conference of the United Methodist Church. It’s website is www.sumatanga.org
_ The camp office is closed on weekends and cell phone coverage is limited. If you have an emergency and need to contact your child, call 256-538-9860 and follow the instructions. As group leader, Bart will carry a walkie-talkie at all times so that camp staff can find our group if we are away from our cabins and the assembly hall.
If you have further questions, feel free to contact Bart at 205-790-1803 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liberty Crossings KAOS Fall 2010
The game consists of players tagging their targets while attempting to avoid their own targeters. The last player untagged is the winner.
I. Tagging Your Target
You can tag a person only by successfully hitting the front of his or her torso with water from an approved water gun; water guns must be small, able to fit into the palm of a hand, and must be brightly colored.
Any destruction of property or physical harm to individuals will not be tolerated and may result in disqualification.
II. Protecting Yourself
If, and only if, you notice your targeter holding a water gun and making a move to tag you or get near you (regardless of whether you are in a safe zone at the time), then you may tag that targeter at any time in the future. If you succeed, it is called a “defensive tag.” All the rules that apply to regular tags also apply to defensive tags.
III. Outside Assistance
No one is allowed to tag your target but you. Others may ”take hits” for you but they cannot actually tag anyone.
IV. Allowable Water Guns
All water guns used in this game must be small, able to fit into the palm of a hand and must be brightly colored. Large water cannons, water balloons, or water guns that are not easily identifiable as toys will not be tolerated and may result in player disqualification.
V. Safe Zones
Safe Zones are areas in which you cannot tag or be tagged by anyone. If someone attempts to tag you in a safe zone, please inform him or her that you are in a safe zone and that their tag is invalid.
VI. Safe Zones Include:
* All school property (buildings, parking lots, stadiums, etc.)
* Any KAOS Organizational Meetings
* The inside of a player’s house
* Places of worship (Inside of any church is off limits! But church parking lots and grounds are OK as long as it doesn’t cause a scene among non-players.)
You may not tag a person where they work.
Cars are safe unless in park.
VII. Your Target
Your target is the person you are currently assigned to tag. When you tag your target, you will be assigned a new target. When the game begins, you will receive the name of your target. You will be given a new target within 24 hours of a valid reported tag.
VIII. Reporting Tags
When you tag someone, either while completing your mission or defending yourself from a targeter, you should report the tag as soon as possible. You will be given the option to include a detailed story about how the tag happened and what sequence of events led to it. The report will be posted for all to enjoy!
Realistically, the target has no real motivation to report his or her tag. Therefore, if the targeter reports the tag before the target has, the target will have 24 hours to dispute or confirm the tag. If the target does not act within the allotted time, the game’s administrators will assume that he or she does not dispute the tag, and the target will be noted as tagged.
However, we strongly encourage all players to report their tags as soon as possible so that games can run smoothly.
If you are tagged, we ask that you exit the game politely and with good sportsmanship; there will be many opportunities to play again.
Also, when you are tagged, your targeter will be reassigned to target the player whom you were targeting so you should give your target to your targeter when he or she tags you.
All participants are expected to adhere to all applicable laws and all school, church, workplace, place of business and place of worship policies. Any disregard for the law and such policies will not be tolerated.
Wow. Is it really almost time to go back to school? Here’s my personal Top 5 List from this summer:
5. We said goodbye to Pastor Keith. Weird to put a “goodbye” on a Top 5 List? Well, think about it. For a lot of our youth, this was the only pastor they had ever known. Keith was such a blessing to our youth and our church family, bringing us all together and building us up for whatever happens next. Now he’s focusing on some writing and music projects and we can’t wait to hear how God uses his gifts next! So saying “bye” to Keith meant that we get to support him in his next season of ministry. What a great way to say how much we love Keith!
4. We welcomed Pastor Wade! Wade Griffith came to us from Trinity UMC in Tuscaloosa. He’s already joined us scraping paint off of a house in Woodlawn and on our rafting trip. He’s also a big gamer, so look for him on XBoX Live!
3. We scraped, primed and painted several house across Birmingham. What a blessing to be used by God to help neighbors in need. Tons of our youth participated throughout the summer. Big thanks to Urban Ministries for helping us make this happen.
2. Vacation Bible School was a hit! Kudos to our youth who did such a great job in skits, running video and sound, and leading groups of children all week long. We’ve got great leaders in our group.
1. FUN!! The scavenger hunt at the mall, Zombies vs. Humans, swimming at Liberty Park’s pool, the Relient K concert, the swim party with the youth from Genesis UMC, dodgeball versus the youth from Mountain Chapel UMC, video games in the youth room….we’ve had a lot of fun throughout the summer.
As much as I loved this summer, God has great things in store for us this fall. I cannot wait to be a part of it. I hope you’ll join us!
Still In One Peace,
Sunday, June 13: Zombies versus Humans!! Zombies attack around 5:30 pm. Be at the church and bring a Nerf gun!
Monday through Friday, June 14-18 – Youth are assisting with our Vacation Bible School. Contact Kati Tillman if you want to help.
Sunday, June 20: No YOUTH NIGHT!! Its Father’s Day, so we’ll take the night off for family time.
Sunday, June 6: Pool Party @ Liberty Park neighborhood pool!! You can meet us at the church around 5:30 pm or just head on over the pool around 6 pm. Dinner is provided. We hope to see you there!
Tuesday, June 8: Painting Ms. Haynes’ home. Allison Morhard and Bart Styes will lead a team of youth to our first day of work on this home in the Avondale/Crestwood area. It’s not too late to sign up! Contact Bart asap!
Wednesday, June 9: Mallrats Scavenger Hunt. We’ll meet at 11 am at the Brookwood Village food court. Youth will divide into teams and be given a list of pictures to take around the mall for points.
Saturday, June 12: Bushel Ministry Pickup Week 1. We will make sure members of our church who sign up for East Lake’s Bushel Ministry get their baskets of fresh produce.
Be sure to check the Upcoming Events Page too!
LinC (Living in Christ) – Sundays @ 9:30 am – we’ll discuss the latest music, movies, news and current events through a biblical lens
Youth Band Rehearsal – dates/time TBD – for musicians of all levels, meets in the Worship Center
Youth Night – Sundays @ 6 pm – fellowship, games, and light group discussion with food, meet in the youth area
God of Rock Series – dates/time TBD – youth who want a “no experience/no talent/no problem” environment are welcome to attend. We’ll make music or just listen while we learn more about rock and roll and its influence on Christian music. Each day we will also explore a topic found in our favorite songs using our Bibles
Urban Ministry – Tuesdays June 8, 22 & July 19, 26 (tentative) – we’ll be working on a home in the Birmingham area through Urban Ministry. We will need at least one adult volunteer each day
Market Basket Ministry – on Saturdays, begins June 12 – we’ll pick up bushels of produce from East Lake and deliver to members of our church. Each bushel purchased by our church supports East Lake’s inner-city market and community
Reflections on Holy Week – Wednesday
Do you ever turn into the “Me” Monster? Someone else is talking and instead of actively listening, you’re really just waiting until you can tell them something about yourself? Or anytime something bad happens to someone, your immediate thought is, “Wow, I’m glad that didn’t happen to me.” Or something bad does happen to you and you cry out, “Why does this always happen to me?!”
We can do the same thing when Christ asks us to do something that we don’t want to in our lives. We don’t want to love our enemies. There is a great reason why they are our enemies in the first place! We don’t want to stand up for our beliefs if they are unpopular. Why take the hit when we can keep silent and fit in? We’ve made it to the top of the heap and we want to stay there. We are popular, powerful, attractive, well off, secure, loved. And we don’t realize how ugly that makes us or how far that is from Christ’s final moments.
In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! He’s the King of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ” In the same way the robbers who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him.
Matthew 27:41-44 (NIV)
“Too often, especially among Christians, we become insular and sectarian. Our faith fortifies our prejudices instead of expanding our reach towards others. When matters turn for the worse, the ugliness of our souls is too often revealed. We scapegoat and, forgetting the lesson of the Good Samaritan, we become indifferent to the suffering of others.” – Eddie Glaude, Jr.
The ugliness of my soul is too often revealed. I have to admit that when I am challenged, I can get nasty. I fire off an email written while I was angry. I figure out a reason why I am right and they are wrong and then I use that to justify my behavior and condemn theirs. And I put myself above all others.
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
Luke 23:34 (NIV)
This painting reminds me that even as Christ was mocked, he was still Christ. Concerned for his mother and his friends, blessing the thief at his side, even forgiving those who gambled for his clothes.
Too often Jesus suffers without me. I disregard his teachings. I abandon what I see as his lost causes and hopeless cases. I turn my back on my friends. I scheme at how to get back at those who have wronged me. I put myself first, which is me at my worst. I give Jesus every reason to come down from the cross and tell God that I am not worth saving. But even still….he lays down his life for me. And he lays down his life for you.
At our worst, Christ is at his best.
I used to listen to a talk radio show that combined serious debate with humorous bits. One of their attempts at comedy was when they would have a character on who was supposed to represent the average evangelical Christian.
This caricature would always take some view point that didn’t seem very Christian but then explain it in such a way as to justify it as being the God’s honest truth. All of this would lead in to an argument with the show’s host. But after the host had torn apart their argument, the Christian would always sneer back to the host, “Guess what….God loves you. DEAL WITH IT!”
It was like they were saying, “God is rubber and your the glue, whatever you don’t believe about Jesus bounces off of him and sticks to you!”
When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answers.
When Jesus was on trial, he was asked to explain himself, to defend himself. It was as if by finding the right words, some air tight legal defense, that he would be able to wow the authorities, convert them to his cause and win his release.
Jesus didn’t roll his eyes, exhale an exaggerated sigh and say, “I could try to explain it to but you’re just too dense to get it.” He didn’t say, “It’s a Christian thing you wouldn’t understand.” He didn’t roll out a chalk board and say, “OK, I’ll outline this one more time and go slowly.” His closing argument to the earthly authorities was basically, “Look at how I have lived my life then tell me who you think I am?”
I love the band Switchfoot. Here is something that their lead singer John Foreman had to say recently, “If I view the truth as my possession to keep safe, I might feel the need to protect my faith. But if I am possessed by the truth, perhaps this protection is no longer needed. Maybe I am set free from the need to defend the truth, rather the truth defends me.”
Last night I got to see Switchfoot perform. It was amazing! They are great musicians who know how to rock out and get the audience pumped. But I’ve seen other bands that have those same qualities. What makes this band unique? Their sense of joy in what they are doing, how they delight in being with each other, how they care for their audience, the causes that they promote, and how their lyrics reflect both their struggles and their faith in God…it all comes together in a band that is set free. They are possessed in the truth. They are defended by the truth. And because of that, they rock.
Jesus didn’t need to defend the truth. Jesus was the truth. He lived the truth.
Can we live our lives in such a way that we don’t need words to justify ourselves? Can we live our lives in such a way that our actions mirror God’s truth? Let’s live in such a way that people won’t ask us if we believe in Christ. Let’s live so that they’ll say, “Look at how they live. Look at how they love each other and even those who don’t get them. Yes, they are Christians!”