Young single adults ages 18-30, and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, met together recently in a Christ-Centered conference in Navarre. More than 100 young people started the event on Friday night with a “get-to-know-you” dance. Saturday morning, they all met early on Navarre Beach for a beach and parking lot cleanup.
Once the work session was complete, they spent the afternoon enjoying the Emerald Coast by kayaking, paddleboarding and building sandcastles. Some of the young people traveled from as far away as Shreveport, Louisiana, Tupelo, Mississippi, and South Carolina. They were all hosted for their overnight stay in Church member homes.
After a day in the sun, the group met at the Gulf Breeze/Navarre Chapel for a dinner followed by a devotional service. Pensacola Stake (region) President Kevin Curtis, his wife Shauna Curtis and Bishop Tadlee Welty, of the Pace community, were the speakers. The theme centered around the importance of centering one's life around Jesus Christ, especially life decision-making.
Bishop Welty spoke about the tendency to postpone adult responsibilities, including dating. It appears that within the last decade, the cultural tides in the world run strongly against commitments in family relationships. Dating requires a commitment, if even for a few hours. The “old fashioned” date allows an opportunity to see how you treat others and how you are treated in a one-on-one situation. It gives opportunities to learn how to initiate and sustain conversations and to build mature relationships. Welty reminded the young men and women that the Lord’s plan for young adults is to marry and create families that can be bound together throughout eternity.
President and Mrs. Curtis spoke about the importance of developing a personal relationship with Christ. They reminded young people about the importance of prayer and scripture study in receiving personal guidance in life’s decisions and shared personal experiences.
“My guideline is always asking myself, can I look God straight in the eyes and know that what I am doing or am deciding to do will be pleasing to Him,” said attendee Stirling Archibald.
The group concluded the weekend’s events with a Sunday morning worship service at the Gulf Breeze/Navarre Chapel. During the service, many of the youth spoke of their commitment to living a Christ-anchored life.
“The Spirit of the Lord was strong, we had lots of fun, and bonds among the group were strengthened,” said Jeron Coleman.
Listening to these speakers and looking out over the group, church leaders were confident that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will continue to grow through the dedication of the younger generation to following Christ, loving their neighbors and serving others.