Kingdom Come retreat connects young people over 18 on the island of Ireland

Kingdom Come retreat connects young people over 18 on the island of Ireland

IM Communications and Pastor Jefferson Melki

“The best weekend!”, “amazing!”, “wonderful”, and “truly blessed” - were some of the comments on social media made by youth after they had attended the Kingdom Come youth retreat in Ireland. From June 7th to 9th, about 50 young adults from Ireland and Northern Ireland got together at Drewstown House, Co Meath for an epic weekend filled with worship, evangelism training, sports activities and meaningful discussions about faith and purpose. Pastor Jefferson Melki, Youth Sponsor for the Irish Mission, explained that the event was aimed at young people over 18 years old “not only for them to come together for worship but find their purpose in the Irish Mission”. The event kicked off on Friday evening with a powerful worship session led by pastor Damieon Lewis, pastor at Dublin West and Drogheda churches.

The next morning, the sunshine suggested the start of a truly remarkable Sabbath day ahead. One of the highlights was the guest speaker sessions with pastor Anthony Fuller, from the South England Conference. He led the youth in a very inspired discussion and also shared a powerful and heartfelt message later on. “It’s always good when leadership recognises the need for space for 18+ young people to come together, to connect relationally, to learn more about the Word of God and to be able to share their own experiences and feelings about church”, he pointed out. In the discussion pastor Fuller spoke about the importance of relationships and the love of God in the context of experience. He explained how to experience God in a real tangible way and His love affects and impacts how people manifest and do evangelism and discipleship. “I’ve learned a lot from their responses, from the challenges they have experienced at church and how we were coming to common solutions reasoning. They were also asking relevant questions and it has been impactful not only to them but to myself as well”, he said.        

In addition to the spiritual growth opportunities, the retreat also offered recreational activities, games and treasure hunt. The moments in the evening around the campfire, were also very precious, where the young people worshipped God with heartfelt songs, shared experiences and developed closer friendships with one another. The staff looking after the food preparation was also amazing and everybody was thankful for their effort in preparing the meals and making sure everyone was happy.

Sunday morning worship time was led by pastor Fillipe Lessa, pastor at Limerick, Waterford and Kilkenny churches. He encouraged the young people to use their talents in God’s mission and to make an impact in their communities. As the retreat drew to a close, the participants sang the last songs, harmonizing their voices in a beautiful chorus of praise and gratitude. The friendships forged and the lessons learned over the weekend would undoubtedly stay with them, reminding them of this special time when they felt truly connected, both to each other and to God. “I pray that God will bless us with resources to do more of these events because our goal is in the future to have these young people be the leaders, starting to lead the worship, starting small groups, evangelism, teaching and preaching. I hope our church will pray and bless us”, said pastor Melki.

Going forward

Youth Ministry aims to encourage young people to know God’s Word, develop a relationship with Jesus and become active in their church community. However, many churches, for various reasons, fail to give the support and encouragement the youth need. Seeking to change this reality, the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Ireland (Irish Mission), has planned many initiatives through the Youth Department to help the youth be more connected to God, to others and to find their purpose in their community.

Thanks and appreciation

A huge thank you to all the dedicated staff who have taken the role to put this event together. Your efforts have helped create a memorable and enriching experience for all involved.

Our deepest gratitude also to the guest speakers: Anthony Fuller, Damieon Lewis and Fillipe Lessa. Thank you for sharing your time, knowledge, and wisdom with us. Your inspiring words and engaging presentations have impacted all who took part.

To all the attendees, our heartfelt gratitude for taking part in this retreat. Your presence, enthusiasm, and active involvement made the event a memorable and uplifting experience for everyone involved.