Adelaide youth combine to find their own space at Carpark Carnival
By ANTHONY CASTLE
More than 140 young people and leaders got the youth year off to a vibrant start by gathering for Carpark Carnival in Adelaide on 10 February. Kicking off at 6:30, Carpark Carnival was the first combined youth event hosted by Revolution Youth at Revolution Church, Oakden. The event offered music and carnival attractions for high school-aged youth who attended from seven corps.
“It was awesome for young people to be together and just have a fun time, but then also engage in a worship space alongside the carnival,” explains Marj Rava, member of the National Youth and Young Adults Team. “Just the gathering of young people was really awesome. We talk about momentum, for youth ministries to have something together ... it’s encouraging for young people.”
The event featured a range of rides and attractions, such as a dunk machine, a basketball area, a bungee run, Daytona arcade machines, a mechanical bull, popcorn, and a barbecue. The event also had worship segments and a message from Megan Elms, ministry leader from Revolution Youth.
“We create the space for young people to experience youth church, have fun and bring leaders together,” says Megan. “With COVID, there was a lot of disjointedness, and people are longing to come together and be united. This was a good starting point.”
Megan spoke about the Parable of the Lost Sheep, the worth of all young people and the love available to everyone. There were approximately 140 people in attendance.
“I shared the story of the lost sheep, how Jesus looks for us and searches for us,” Megan explains. “Even when we have mucked up or felt unloved or judged or lonely, Jesus comes to find us. He found me and told me there was nothing that would separate me. That’s a story everyone should know; that they are loved without exception.”
Carpark Carnival organisers hope to run the event again, building on the momentum with local youth leaders and young people at coming events.
“An event like that is a time to show them they are loved, and they belong; that they are worth it,” Marj explains. “That’s the key, you have some fun but also give a message of love and acceptance ... so that they know their worth. It’s why we do it ... to show young people that they are valued.”