Australia Southern District youth gather for annual youth conference

Australia Southern District youth gather for annual youth conference

by
Andrew and Jenna Stout for Asia-Pacific Region Church of the Nazarene
| 18 Jan 2024
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Asia-Pacific Reload

More than 50 young people from Adelaide, Canberra, Melbourne, and Sydney gathered over the weekend of 5-7 January 2024 for the third annual Australia Southern District Youth Conference. The weekend included a tram tour of Melbourne, music and worship, teaching times, and fellowship.

On Sunday morning, Pastor Paul Spanos hosted all the youth and several Melbourne-area Nazarene churches at Thornbury Community Church of the Nazarene for worship, Communion, and an enormous Greek feast. Melbourne has one of the largest Greek populations outside of Greece, so Greek food is essential to every visit.
Leaders in the Australia Southern District have imagined this youth conference for many years. 

Pastor Harry Malos of Mt. Waverley Community Church of the Nazarene said, “Approximately 13-14 years ago, the Lord placed a direction in my mind; it wasn’t through a dream or a concept, but more like ‘This is the road I want you to take.’” 

In 2021, he helped organize the first District Youth Conference in Melbourne in partnership with the district. Malos has built the gathering on three pillars: first, defining the identity of the Church of the Nazarene; second, answering what it means to have a relationship with Christ today; and third, envisioning how we can pass the baton of church leadership to the next generation. 

David McEwan from Nazarene Theological College–Australia/New Zealand and Pastor Glenn Stanley from Sydney led sessions titled “Our Nazarene Identity” and “Passing on the Faith Baton.”

Everyone left the event feeling inspired. Agnes Fifita, a youth leader from Sydney, organized many of the conference’s details and led worship. 

“We learned at the 2024 Youth Conference the importance of fellowship and how much we—as the Body of Christ—need each other,” Fifita said.

In reflection, Malos feels blessed to see how God has worked through the gathering since its inception.

“I have been a Christian for many years, but I am still in awe as to how God initiates and responds,” Malos said, summarizing this year’s conference.

--Asia-Pacific Region Church of the Nazarene

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