Firezone asked some young adults from around Aotearoa about their Congress experience … Here’s what they had to say:
Anna Christiansen—Northern (Auckland City)
Ben Clark—Central (Johnsonville)
Ben Walker—Southern (Nelson Tasman Bays)
Cody Clarke—Midland (Hamilton City)
Josh Burns—Northern (Whangārei)
Jake Walker—Southern (no corps in Motueka)
HOW MANY SLICES OF PIZZA DID YOU EAT AT THE YOUTH DINNER?
Cody: I didn’t get any =(
Ben W: It would’ve been rude and criminal not to taste at least one of each flavour …
Ben C: About 4 or 5 …
Anna: A couple of slices—I’m not a big pizza eater.
Josh: Yeah about that … quite a lot eh! I kinda lost count—oops!
Jake: 5 or 6 pieces—can’t remember exactly …
WHERE HAVE YOU WORN YOUR NEW TSA T-SHIRT SO FAR?
Cody: Around the house!
Ben W: I wore my free youth t-shirt out on my first date when I got back!
Ben C: I didn’t get one—the line was too long …
Anna: I’ve worn it to kid’s club and music practice =)
Josh: Aww nuts! I didn’t grab one!
Jake: I haven’t worn it yet…
DID YOU GET A SELFIE WITH THE GENERAL? WHY OR WHY NOT?
Cody: No, but I was having a photo taken with his wife and he jumped in behind us!
Ben W: The General actually asked for a selfie with me—so I did get a selfie with our general. Got to get the follows up on the gram!
Ben C: No—but I saw him across the room …
Anna: No I didn’t get a selfie with the General. He was busy talking to other youth from around the territory and I had to leave early because I was serving at Encounter Kids.
Josh: More like the General got a selfie with us! Even made it onto his Insta—yeow!
Jake: Yes! I was part of a group that got a selfie with the General.
DID YOU HAVE A SIGNIFICANT GOD MOMENT? TELL US ABOUT IT?
Cody: I got to see God work through the kids in the Encounter Kids programme. Great to see young people from different places and different backgrounds worship together and it was definitely a privilege to work with the kids.
Ben W: I loved being in the presence of the Spirit on the Saturday night when people were responding and so many people were being touched and renewed right in front of my eyes! It was truly a reminder that God isn’t finished yet and he’s got more in store for his people and for The Salvation Army.
Anna: I did have a God moment at Congress! God spoke to me throughout the weekend that Kid’s ministry is my calling within The Salvation Army!
WHAT’S YOUR CONGRESS HIGHLIGHT?
Cody: Meeting new people, and the cool kids I got to look after at Encounter Kids!
Ben W: The Suva brass band was such a delight to listen to—they were a lot fun! I loved all the cultural aspects that were included at Congress, because it’s good to remember that The Salvation Army is made up of so many unique and wonderful people.
Ben C: Being asked to MC alongside Mat Badger for the Friday night service was a pretty cool experience!
Anna: I had an absolute ball of a time in Encounter Kids! My favourite time was hands down the Island Party we had on the Saturday night! So many laughs and so much fun!
Josh: So many highlights! I loved the kotahitanga that was so present the whole weekend! The celebration of everyone’s different cultures was incredible, and yet being together for the same purpose made it so special to be part of. I was buzzing from the energy! I absolutely LOVED Māori Ministry leading worship on the Saturday night. I loved supporting everyone who took part in the creative expo on Saturday. Another highlight was having new hope and excitement knowing of General Brian’s passion for this generation of young people. He was so easy to relate to, both when talking in person and when he was preaching his on-fire sermons! Last but not least, I loved the opportunity to catch up with so many friends from around the territory who I wouldn’t see if it wasn’t for events like Congress.
Jake: My highlight was hanging out with friends and family from all around NZ that I don’t get to see very often.