Congregational Life Youth Ministry

ELCA Youth Gathering – Day 3

From Clara Johnston

Yesterday was an awesome day at the youth gathering! The first thing we did was went to lunch under our hotel in tunnels that have access to the whole city. When we went, I was in a small group, and we went to lunch at a Mexican place. When we were eating, a man showed up, and he asked for someone to buy him food. Pastor David immediately got up without hesitation and let the man get whatever he wanted to get. There was definitely some God in him yesterday!

After lunch, we had Synod Day, when we get to see people from all across Virginia, and from all of our other youth events. During Synod Day, we did lots of team building activities, listened to many stories, and of course sang lots of songs about God! It was a lot of fun and it was really nice to see friends from our state!

Afterward, we stayed in the hotel for a few hours and just hung out. Then, we went to an early dinner of Tex-Mex food, which was really good! Next, we headed toward the trains so that we could go to the Mass Gathering of over 31,000 people! It’s really crazy how many people have come to this life-changing event!

Mass Gathering yesterday was life-changing! Our speakers yesterday talked about many topics that most people would probably not expect to hear at a youth event. We listened to someone who is dealing with Mitochondrial disease, someone who did self-harm at some point in his life, and someone who was even a bully at some point in their life. Some of these stories were really sad, but they were healing, because God was with them. Overall, Friday was a really awesome, and life-changing day.

Oh and I would like to give a special thanks to the whole congregation and anyone who has helped us on our journey! Without all of you, we would not be here, but because of all of the support the church continues to give, we are able to do really cool things like this! Thank you so much, and I can’t wait to tell more about the trip when we get back!

Congregational Life Youth Ministry

ELCA Youth Gathering – Day 2

From Jacob Schult, Griffin Horacek, and Bradley Craig

Today we learned that God will help us through tough times but God won’t make them disappear. Overall it was a great experience and we got to meet wonderful people. We also caught lots of Pokemon. We loved having a chance learn, worship, and talk to God with 30,000 youth. Today we also got to experience what it is like to be in a wheelchair. It is very very hard.
Congregational Life Youth Ministry

ELCA Youth Gathering – Day 1

A message from Drew Derrick and Nick Muir. Be sure to follow live streaming of the ELCA Youth Gathering at

Today has been a very fun and eventful day. This morning was full of sleep and conversation of the week ahead. In the afternoon, for lunch, our group went into the tunnels underneath the city. Most buildings in downtown Houston are connected to these tunnels, so no matter where we are, even if we got lost, we could use the tunnel. Luckily, this tunnel was connected to our hotel, so there was easy access. After eating, we took a train to the NRG arena for games and activities. After these fun few hours, we went to the NRG Stadium for our main gathering. We heard from speakers Tuhina Rasche and Bryan Stevenson, who both spoke about Gods acceptance of everyone and the justice God brings to those oppressed. We also sang songs like This Little Light of Mine in several languages and I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For by U2. Finally, we returned to our hotel and talked about our lows and highs of the day, then headed off to sleep to prepare for another wonderful day at the ELCA National Youth Gathering!
Congregational Life Social Events Youth Ministry

Coming Soon

Opportunity for Fellowship

Fun Variety Show coming Sunday, August 19. It’s going to be a “Really big show!”

ALL ages and ALL acts are welcome. Do you play an instrument, talk to puppets, sing, write poetry, sketch, dance, or tell jokes, perform magic? Maybe you’d like to do a little skit with your friends or family? The more acts the merrier the show will be!

More details later but register with Cathy Dudley or Sarah Melendy now. Deadline for act registration is August 12.

Congregational Picnic

The date for the annual church picnic this year is Sunday, September 9 beginning at 4:00p.m. Hamburgers and hotdogs with all the fixin’s and a fun bouncy house for kids of all ages provided by the church. Bring you’re a lawn chair, a friend, and your favorite side dish to share.

St. Philip Youth 17th Annual Golf Tournament

September 29, 2018 at Botetourt Golf and Swim Club. Plan now to get a group of golfers together or speak to your favorite local business about sponsoring a hole or a tee.

Congregational Life Music Ministry

Summertime and the Living is Easy

Judy Burnette

During the summer, the church choir will be taking a bit of a break from rehearsals each week and helping to lead worship every Sunday. The choir will only sing twice each month, although the specific Sundays the choir sings will vary from month to month. The worship band will be also be leading us in worship a couple of times this summer. On the Sundays that neither the choir nor band will be in worship service, a variety of special music will be offered.


Congregational Life Youth Ministry

Youth News

ELCA Youth Gathering

This summer, St. Philip sends 9 youth and Pastor David to the National Youth Gathering in Houston, Texas where they will join with over 30,000 others from around the country. This will be a great faith-filled, fun-filled week (June 26- July 2) as children of God called to serve with compassion, energy, and excitement.

Ultimately, St. Philip wants youth to understand the fierce love that God has for them, just as they are, and that by grace, through faith, they have been saved. When young people (or really any age person!) truly claim this reality, it indeed changes everything.

As the Gathering approaches please pray for our St. Philip group.

Other Summer Youth Events

Regular youth group will pause for the summer. Check out these youth events for summer fun!!


  • 4th (3:30-6pm) – Launching Pad
  • 8th – 10th (Fri – Sun) – Youth Assembly; at Roanoke College


  • 29th (4:30-7pm) – Pool Party at the Radtkes!!
Congregational Life Council Notes News

Casting Nets

Dan Radmacher

Jesus promised to make his disciples fishers of men. But in the modern church, it seems like we hesitate to cast the net. We float happily along in our boat, and hope the fish will simply jump in.

At St. Philip, council wants to figure out how to cast our nets for a vibrant, 21st century church. We’re going to start exploring some ways of improving outreach to the community using the modern tools available to the church.

I’ll be working on developing a strategy for this, but I could certainly use some help from any social media-savvy members of the congregation. If you have thoughts or ideas, or a willingness to help out in any way, contact me at

A couple of things council is considering starting as soon as possible include live-streaming services using Facebook Live. A tripod will be set up with a phone or tablet and broadcast services live. The hope is this will both offer a convenient way for members of the congregation who can’t make it to church to still experience service, and to help spread the word about St. Philip and its ministries.

Other events may be livestreamed as well.

In addition, council is going to start a church Instagram account to supplement the Facebook and Twitter presence. The hope is to spread the responsibility for keeping that account vibrant by having different people “take over” the account for several weeks at a time. If you have an active Instagram presence, and would be willing to help the church build its own presence, please contact me at the email address above.

Images are an important part of any effective outreach. Please take photos whenever you can at church events. Leadership will figure out the most effective way to share them. If you have a particular interest in photography, let me know.

If we want St. Philip to grow and thrive, we cannot be content to simply wait for fish to jump in the boat. Please let me know if you’re interested in helping find better ways to cast our digital nets.

Congregational Life News Worship Events

Holy Week Schedule

Maundy Thursday, March 29
Fellowship 6:00pm
Worship 7:00pm

Good Friday Worship, March 30, 7:00pm

Easter Egg Hunt, Saturday, March 31, 10am

Easter Sunday, April 1
Sunrise Worship, 7:00am
Easter Celebration Worship, 8:30am and 11:00am
Easter Breakfast, 9:45am

Congregational Life News Worship Events

Easter Sunday

Christian Education Congregational Life

Childrens’ Opportunity for Faith Formation

Children’s Faith Formation at St. Philip happens in multiple ways. During Sunday morning worship services kids participate in the central communal act of god’s people, worshipping together! On the second Sunday of each month, there is opportunity for ALL to come together between worship services for Intergenerational Faith Formation. And on the fourth Sunday of each month in the afternoon Family Faith Formation allows families to celebrate and fellowship together in faith and fun.