Young Methodists debate sexuality and gender at sell-out 3Generate

Young people aired their views on conflict and peace, examstress, bullying, sexuality and gender orientation at the sell-out3Generate event this month. More than 250 children and young peoplemet at Whitemoor Lakes in Lichfield for the annual gathering, whichdrew delegates from as far away as Gibraltar, Cornwall, the Isle ofMan, Scotland and Wales. A report on the assembly will be presentedto the Methodist Conference next summer.

Tamara Wray was elected to the role of Youth President for2013/2014. The 21-year-old university student from London said: "Iwas shocked when I found out that I had been elected - I was soexcited that people felt I would be able to do this role. I hope toget more to know more young people in the Church and empower themto do something with their lives."

Abby Waterson, Roxanne Bainbridge  and Tom Williamson wereelected to support Tamara as representatives to Conference in2013/2014, and Rebecca Belshaw was elected to the role of CouncilRepresentative. Samuel Hutchinson was elected to the role ofEcumenical representative for 14 to 17-year-olds and Emma Johnsonwas elected to the same role for the 18 to 23-year-old age group.Rachel Allison was voted in as the British Youth Councilrepresentative.

Hayley Moss, Methodist Youth President, hosted the event. "'Itwas a fantastic event," she said. "The young people I spoke to werereally enjoying themselves. They talked about their faith and theirconnection to the Church which they felt was being re-invigoratedas a result of their experience of the weekend. It was a time fullof vitality, challenge and hope as we explored who we are and whatGod is saying to us as part of the Methodist Church oftoday." 

The young people also made a pilgrimage around the NationalMemorial Arboretum and held a collection for the final communionservice for Street Child World Cup. A film of the weekend will bereleased to District Synods in December.  

The Lichfield venue is provisionally booked for next year, butorganisers will reassess whether they need to book a bigger venuecloser to the time. People eager to attend next year's event arebeing encouraged to register their interest now, although doing so will not guarantee a place.