ELCA Youth Gathering Discussion Questions based on Mikka McCracken

Discussion questions based on the “Why?” spoken word

1. “Why did you go to Detroit?” How would you answer that question? What expectations do you have for this week?

2. “This isn't just a gathering. This is a movement. This is a place where we come together.” What's the difference between a gathering & a movement? To you, which is our time in Detroit about? Why?

If the Youth Gathering is a movement, then what are we trying to do through this movement?

3. “I want our faith to be big enough for my doubt.” What would a faith big enough for doubt look like?

What are some of your biggest doubts?

Is our faith big enough for your doubt? Why or why not?

4. “I want my brokenness to rise up toward healing.” In what ways are you broken?

How might you experience healing here at the Youth Gathering?

How might you be part of healing for others?

5. “God wants us to rise up together.” During our time in Detroit, what are we rising up to do? What about when we get home?

6. “God wants resurrection for all of us.” What scripture passages support this? Why?

How are you being resurrected?

How is Detroit being resurrected?

Discussion questions based on Mikka McCracken

7. According to Mikka, “Everywhere I go, people think I'm naive and a little out of touch because I believe it's possible to end poverty and hunger.” Do you think it's naive to think it's possible to end poverty & hunger?

Do you think it's possible to end poverty and hunger? Why or why not?

If it's possible to end poverty & hunger, then why do you think Jesus said “The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me” (Matthew 26:11)?

8. “Hunger is not caused by scarcity. Hunger is caused by inequality.” Do you agree or disagree with this? Why?

How does inequality cause hunger? How have you seen this play out in our community back home?

9. Answer Mikka's questions: “What are the systems that keep the poor poor and the rich rich?”

10. Mikka said, “Everyday as people of faith, we believe in something that others say is impossible: Jesus Christ.” What's impossible about the Jesus story? Why then do you believe it?

11. According to Mikka, our God is a “God of abundance.” How have you experienced God's abundance?

How have you seen God's abundance in the world around you?

12. Mikka told us to “get to work”. How can you get to work to end poverty and hunger here in Detroit? Back at home?

Download this as a PDF here. 

Discussion questions about Bishop Eaton's remarks. 

Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen serves as the Minister of Youth and Family at Atonement Lutheran Church in Barrington, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. Jen is the author of The Jesus Gap: What Teens Actually Believe about Jesus (The Youth Cartel), The Real Jesus (The Youth Cartel), Unleashing the Hidden Potential of Your Student Leaders (Abingdon), and A Mission That Matters (Abingdon). Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal, Immerse, and The Christian Century. Jen is also the Assistant Director of Arbor Research Group where she has led many national studies. When not doing ministry or research, she and her husband, Doug, and daughter, Hope, can be found traveling and enjoying life together.

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A Mission That Matters: How To Do Short-Term Missions Without Long-Term Harm

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Unleashing the Hidden Potential of your Student Leaders

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The Real Jesus

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The Jesus Gap

What Teens Actually Believe About Jesus

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