CLAY 2020 Postponed To 2021

Over the past month, members of the executive for the 2020 CLAY Gathering National Planning Committee from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC) and the Anglican Church of Canada (ACC) have been monitoring updates as coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to escalate.

After much discernment, the planning team shares that CLAY, originally scheduled for August 20-23, 2020, will be postponed to August 19-22, 2021. The event will still be held at the Southern Alberta Institute for Technology (SAIT) in Calgary, Alberta.

The CLAY Executive expresses its gratitude for the National Planning Committee, Production Team, and local volunteers who have been meeting and working over these past 18 months to create an event that is educational, faith-filled and inspiring for our young people. When we picked the theme of EnRoute, we knew we were going on a journey. Journeys often involve twists and turns. We will continue on this path and are dedicated to bringing this wonderful event to life in 2021. Just like on the Road to Emmaus, we know that Jesus walks with us on this journey.

For those who have already registered for CLAY 2020, we will transfer your registration to CLAY 2021. For those unable to attend the new date, registration fees will be fully refunded. If you are seeking a refund please contact Heidi, CLAY Registrar, at [email protected] before December 31, 2020.

Participants who have registered or were planning on registering for CLAY 2020 who will exceed the age limit for the event in 2021 will be allowed to participate because of these special circumstances. For clarification on this, please contact Heidi [email protected]

We plan on opening registration again in January 2021. Home Team Leaders can make substitutions to their Home Team free of charge once registration re-opens.

CLAY will continue being a biennial event, and therefore, the next CLAY will be planned for the summer of 2023. Should you have any questions, please contact: Sheilagh McGlynn, ACC staff person [email protected] or Gretchen Peterson, ELCIC staff person [email protected]

We know that this announcement may bring out many different emotions in all of us – leaders, youth, and organizers. We hope the prayer offered below by Emily Walker, CLAY National Planning Committee Youth member, will bring comfort to all:

A Prayer In The Time Of Covid-19

God of love, you help us turn our worries into prayers. You hear the confusion, anxiety, uncertainty, and fear in our minds right now. We lift our burdens to you so that we can let them go, knowing you are here to listen. We pray for every young person who has lost their job & now faces financial struggles, for every university student who had to return home unexpectedly, for youth whose home is not a safe place, for everyone struggling with the transition to online school or lack of routine, for the graduating class who might not get to walk across the stage, and for all people who are missing their friends. Together we grieve all the lost joy and happy memories quarantine has taken from us.

Thank you, Lord, for the person on the other side of the screen right now. For their courage, strength, and kindness despite everything weighing on their hearts. Help them to know your boundless grace and endless love is still here even when they can’t see it. We pray for doctors, nurses, janitors, cashiers, politicians, and everyone working at this time. We ask you to help us see Your face in all the brave people keeping our families and country together. Although buildings may be empty, we pray you keep our hearts full of compassion for others and love for our neighbours. We thank you for FaceTime, TikTok, Instagram challenges, and all the other things that remind us we are not alone in this.

Knowing God, you understand even the messiest of our prayers. Despite physical distance, we are still Your church. We pray for CLAY and the hundreds of young people disappointed that we can’t come together this summer. We look forward to next summer…. We call you to be our lighthouse in the wavy seas and our guide in the wilderness. God, you’ve got some crazy plot with this whole Corona thing, but we trust you. The unknowns of Your plan have no end, but neither does your grace.

Amen.

Inspired by these bible verses:
Psalm 94:19 When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy
Philippians 4:7 He gives peace that passes understanding
Psalm 40:2 He lifted me out of the mud. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along.
John 13:7 Jesus replied, you don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will
Joshua 1:9 This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Isaiah 46:4 I have made you and I will carry you: I will sustain you and I will rescue you.

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Anglican Church of Canada, April 21, 2020