"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Mt 28:19-20)
The Emmanuel European Youth Forum takes place every end of the year since 2015 in one of Europe’s cities and reunites the young members Emmanuel Community and other youths participating in the community events.
In 2020, a youth team from Brno, Czech Republic, agreed to organize and host the EEYM in their city; what a joy!
Even though the travel and sanitary conditions changed the initial plans, the team could regroup and organize an online event between the 1st and the 3rd of January 2021.
“Last year was very special for all of us. When we agreed in the spring to organize the EEYM, we wouldn’t have any idea what the situation would look like in December. In April, it seemed like we would meet personally at the end of the year. But it turned out, the only possibility for a joint meeting is an online version.”
When we realized there is no hope to host the meeting in person, the first thing to do was change the program from a live version to the internet one. Our program team, led by Magdalena and Carl Jagwitz, managed it excellently. The second step was to prepare for streaming. We had to make a lot of decisions quickly, which took a lot of investment and effort, especially from our brother Juraj Jurčo who handled the technical part.
The participants could log in via a Zoom link. However, a small organization team gathered in a chapel from where they transmitted on live the prayers, the praise ( beautifully lead with instruments and vocal guidance), and the guidelines for every part of the encounter.
The online meeting included:
- Praise moments.
- Praying together for the participant’s intentions and the world.
- Father Dominique Janthial gave four teachings.
- Sharing in small groups.
Prayer evenings but also informal moments for games, discussions, and laughter were also in the program.
It was essential to feeling the support of older brothers and sisters from the Czech community. They kept a prayer watch and have been adorating permanently for 50 hours during the whole event!
There was 24/7 adoration happening just two floors below the main room where the Czech youth team held the event’s streaming. Over the whole weekend, brothers and sisters from the Czech Emmanuel Community prayed explicitly for each of the registered participants and the team “This gave us certainty, that we all are one community, only with different services.” During the adoration, they received a Word of God for all of the participants:
The participants were pleased to meet and entrust their year to the Lord together and have the more informal moments, having a drink and getting to know each other. It is not the same to have a beer all alone in your apartment, or with others, even if they are behind a computer screen.
The meeting was for all Czech youths, one ample opportunity to meet each other and experience the community after such a long time. We are also very thankful for Allwin and Marie Alex, who created such a lovely (Holy Spirit!) atmosphere into our meeting, one of the Emmanuel Community Youth Leaders from the Czech Republic, Ondrej Bakes, told us.
Alwin and Marie Alex, part of the organization team of the forum were very touched by the fraternity and support all the brothers and systers provided as well as the prayer of the community for the youths.
This was a very nice experience for us, through this service we could deepen our relationships with other brothers and sisters from the community. Everyone was ready to serve others, through their talents, encouragement, prayer
It is a pity that we could not meet in person and welcome all of you in our city of Brno, but as we prayed for this meeting since the beginning and asked God to show us the way He wanted this meeting to happen, we deeply believe this was the right way.
We are very thankful for this experience and looking forward to the next meeting in a usual way, in another country.