Junior High Youth Gathering '17 | Michigan District, LCMS

Junior High Youth Gathering '17

Friday, June 2, 2017 - 04:00 pm EDT to Sunday, June 4, 2017 - 11:00 am EDT

Bavarian Inn Lodge
1 Covered Bridge Ln
Frankenmuth, MI 48734

Event Description: 

Nailed It!
The 2017 Jr. High Youth Gathering

Greetings in Christ!

We are thrilled to announce that the 2017 Michigan District Junior High Youth Gathering will again be held in Frankenmuth, Michigan this coming summer, June 2 - 4, 2017. We are very excited for this year’s theme, NAILED IT! The theme, based on Colossians 2:13b - 14 (you can see below), will be a fantastic way for this year's participants to explore Luther’s emphasis on the authority of God’s Word, our own inability to "Nail It" in our daily Christian walk, and the wonderful reality of our salvation through Christ Nailing It on our behalf on the cross!

“God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross.” ( Colossians 2:13b - 14 NIV)

If you have questions about the gathering or location, please contact Luke Esselman at 217.899.1217 or Chuck Anderson at 989.996.0088.

Because of Him—

Luke Esselman, Co-Chair
Chuck Anderson, Co-Chair

2016 Video Recap

Registration Information: 


Gathering Cost:  $65/person plus lodging for 2 nights. The $65 cost includes: a t-shirt, 4 meals, activities, registration,  and all programming expenses.  

  • Housing costs: Each room at the Bavarian Inn Lodge is $83 per night. The gathering will include two nights. Up to 4 people can share 1 room. The housing cost per participant varies depending on how many people occupy that room.

Gathering Details:

  • BIBLE STUDY LEADERS: Rev. Bill Yonker and Rev. Ryan Peterson
  • SECTIONALS: Large and small sectionals on a variety of topics
  • SERVANT EVENTS: Each participant will have an opportunity to serve in Frankenmuth and the surrounding area. After you have registered, you will receive information from our Servant Event Team.
  • ACTIVITES: Group challenges, evening events, concerts, sightseeing, and much more!
  • PRESENTERS & MUSIC: See below for a complete list with photos and bios of all our special guests!

Registration Details:

Age Specifications: Youth participants include any youth entering grades 7, 8, or 9 in the Fall of 2017 and adults (minimum 21 years of age). Both youth and adults must be affiliated with a LCMS congregation. Pastoral verification is required of all adult leaders. There is no minimum or maximum for the size of a church's group, though is is suggested that there be at least one adult leader for every six youth. If a group is to have both male and female youth participants, it is suggested that there should be at least one male and one female adult leader.

PreRegistration:  Groups must pre-register for the 2017 Michigan District Junior High Gathering. The Pre-registration webform asks each congregation for their group's contact info, a tentative number of youth and adults attending, and a deposit of $250. This will enable you to receive the registration forms via email. You will receive a confirmation email after you have pre-registered. If you have paid by credit card, the forms will be attached to the confirmation email. Otherwise, you will receive the forms after your payment has been received. The $250 will be returned ONLY if your group remains on the waiting list and is not able to attend the gathering.This deposit will be applied to the group's final balance. (Note: For tax purposes, no personal checks or credit cards will be accepted.)


  • Please register as soon as possible to ensure appropriate housing needs.
  • The youth leader should pre-register for the group on the Michigan District's website.
  • The $250 deposit does NOT hold any rooms for your group.
  • Checks should be made payable to the Michigan District, LCMS and mailed to:

Junior High Youth Gathering

Michigan District, LCMS

3773 Geddes Rd.

Ann Arbor, MI 48105 

Registration:  REGISTRATION DEADLINE HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO APRIL 15, 2017  After receiving the housing, servant event, adult and youth registration forms, the youth worker will instruct the group to complete them on the computer, print them, and then sign them. These forms should be returned to the youth worker. That youth worker can either mail or email the forms to Gail Milatz (gail.milatz@michigandistrict.org). NO HANDWRITTEN FORMS WILL BE ACCEPTED.

Dates to remember:

  • All forms are due to the Michigan District office by April 15, 2017
  • All substitutions or changes are due to the Michigan District office by April 15, 2017
  • Final payment of the balance due to the District Office by May 1, 2017
  • No refunds will be given after May 1, 2017


For more information or questions, contact Gail Milatz at the District Office at 888.225.2111 ext 235 or gail.milatz@michigandistrict.org 


** Preregistration should be completed for the group by a youth worker.


ATTENTION YOUTH LEADERS! Join the Facebook group Youth Leaders - Michigan District, LCMS to network, share ideas, ask questions and keep up to date on the latest youth gathering news!


We look forward to seeing you in Frankenmuth this June!



Resources & Additional Information :

Promotional Materials


Rev. Ryan Peterson

Pastor Ryan Peterson currently serves as the Campus Pastor and Assistant Professor of Theology at Concordia University in Ann Arbor, Mich. Prior to Concordia, Pastor Ryan was a teaching pastor at St. John in Ellisville, Mo. He met his wife Kristy at Concordia University Wisconsin, and then attended Concordia Seminary - St. Louis, Mo. Peterson is finishing his Doctor of Ministry at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Ill. Pastor Ryan and  Kristy, along with their four kids, love camping and exploring the beauty of #PureMichigan.


These guys can't wait to meet, hang out, have a blast, and seek Jesus with you through worship.

Dean, from Swen and Dean, is Swen's brother and partner in ministry. He loves Reese's Peanut Butter cups the most. He's a Marriage and Family Pastor at his church but can't figure skate. He can't wait to be with you again in Michigan.

Stephen  is a doctor of Chiropractic from Ft. Worth, Texas. He has owned more guitars and attended more proms than you and your friends combined.

Paul is from Minneapolis, Minn. and is a graphic designer. His current kickball stats have him at 88 career home runs.

Ted hails from Maple Grove, Minn. and is a huge Minnesota Vikings fan. He has been a Youth Director, Event Ministry Director, Actor, and currently is a Radio Producer. Ted is thankful for his wife and two daughters and for the chance to be here with you!

Rev. Bill Yonker

Rev. Bill Yonker is pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church of East Dundee, Ill. He loves spending time with his family and traveling around the country talking to people about the Lord Jesus. Presently he lives in Illinois, and though he is a long- time Michigander and went to school in Indiana and Missouri, he is a “true blue Cheese Head devoted to his birth state of Wisconsin and the Green Bay Packers.” Besides spending time with his wife, Joanne, and three children, Rebecca, Abigail and Joshua and speaking, you can usually find Pastor Yonker reading, writing, or playing basketball, which are his other passions.


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