Rise Up Together – Day 2

Good morning, everyone! Wednesday was an eye-opening day for our youth, as more participants from all over the country (and the world) continued to arrive in Detroit for the Gathering. Our day started with another transportation delay, this time having to do with our shuttle downtown. I don’t envy the job that the Gathering Team has trying to coordinate the movements of 30,000 people throughout a major American city! Once again, our group spent the time chatting and getting to know people from other groups (shout out to the folks from Harrisburg (PA), Greensboro (NC), and Jacksonville (FL)). Around 11:00 we hit the road for the Cobo Center, where we were treated to views like this:

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The guys found the sports activity area pretty quickly and spent much of the day there, which was fine because many of the educational exhibits weren’t open yet.

Around 4:30, we headed toward Ford Field, home of the Detroit Lions, where we will meet up all together each evening for Mass Gathering.

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Once we got ourselves inside and found our seats, we got a look at the stage for that evening’s events.

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The house was rocking, with a performance from Lost and Found, and the amazing house band leading us in song. We had a great time getting ready for the evening speakers who included the following:

The Rev. Elizabeth Eaton, Presiding Bishop of the ELCA, and the Rev. Dr. Donald Kreiss, Bishop of the Southeast Michigan Synod, welcoming us to Detroit.

An unnamed young woman sharing a poetic reflection on the question “Why?” and how we might answer it in our own lives.

Mikka McCracken, ELCA World Hunger, sharing her conviction that ending hunger and poverty is possible because we worship a God of abundance and possibility.

The Rev. Dr. Luke Powery, Duke Divinity School, preaching powerfully about the “end” of Mark’s Gospel and our call to be “resurrection revolutionaries” who will not remain silent in the face of the problems that face our society and world.

The Mass Gathering ended with an incredible performance from Detroit’s famous “Selected of God” Gospel Choir (featuring Lutheran rap/hip-hop artist *Agape).

We hit the streets again to get to our hotel shuttles, arriving back in Sterling Heights around 11pm just in time for our Final 15 devotions and some instructions for Thursday’s “Proclaim Justice” day. We’ll see what today brings as we continue to Rise Up Together.

If you’re interested in checking out a Mass Gathering, they are available to view live online. Find a link at http://www.elca.org/gathering. Music starts at 6pm CDT, and speakers begin shortly after 7!

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