(Jan. 4, 2013) Approximately 4,000 students in grades 7-12, adult leaders and parents representing about 220 churches (independent and various denominations) from Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and Virginia are expected to attend the 26th annual youth rally sponsored by the Young People’s Ministries of the Peninsula-Delaware Conference of the United Methodist Church this weekend at the Ocean City convention center.
The theme of this year’s three-day conference is “Undignified,” based on scripture verse 2 Samuel 6:21-22, “… I will celebrate before the Lord. I will become even more undignified than this.”
“It’s all about worship and worshiping God freely and surrendering yourself to God in worship,” said Young People’s Ministries Director Shane Hinderliter.
Check-in for the rally will take place today, Friday, from noon to 8 p.m. at the 40th Street venue. The cost is $75 per person for church youth groups and families interested in participating.
The exhibit hall, which will include vendors, games, mission agencies and admission representatives from several Christian colleges, will open at 6 p.m. tonight, followed by general session 1 at 8 p.m. and a concert by Tye Tribbett.
General session 2 kicks off Saturday morning’s activities. Several service projects will be offered at selected community organizations and churches throughout the afternoon.
Guest speaker Jim Walker, spoken word artist Tiffanie Shanks, illusionist Jared Hall, worship leader group Rend Collective Experiment and musical entertainers Francesca Battistelli and The Letter Black are scheduled to take the stage this weekend.
“There will be a lot going on this weekend. Multiple events will be going on during each session,” Hinderliter said.
To give back to the community, Hinderliter said donations for Diakonia, a crisis shelter in West Ocean City, will be collected throughout the weekend. Requested supplies can be taken to the exhibit hall at convention center or items will be available for purchase there.
In the earlier years, the rally was held at Salisbury University. The event moved to the Princess Royale on 91st Street in the mid-1990s, according to Hinderliter, who has been involved with the organization since 2007. After a few years, it outgrew the space and in the late 90s, the rally’s new home became the convention center.
Approximately 200 people attended the first youth rally 25 years ago. Participation has grown over the years, as more than 4,000 took part in the activities last year.
For more information about the rally, visit www.umyoungpeople.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.