Hello Whistler Community Church,

What a time it has been for all of us over the last several months. However I am grateful to work for such an amazingly creative organization, that despite a variety of challenges we can proudly say that “Young Life Always Happens”.

When covid arrived in the corridor and lock downs began, we moved our in person meetings online using the zoom app. It isn’t our preferred method for hanging out with teenagers but we were thankful for the opportunity that allowed us to run young life club online. Playing Family Feud over zoom is always a great time.

As soon as restrictions shifted into stages 3 and 4 we were thankful to be able to get together with teenagers once more. Over the summer we focused a lot of time on adventurous outdoor events. One highlight we created was the Alpine Adventure Club, a weekly hiking program around the mountains of Pemberton, exploring new peaks and backcountry cabins along the way. Those days were packed full being 8 – 10 hour days, enjoying one another company, sharing lunch on top of a mountain and engaging in amazing conversations about life and faith. Several parents were shocked their teen was getting up extra early to hike all day. It was encouraging to share that the intentionality within those days makes all that hiking worth it and we know teens value it so much.

Biking was a big part of the summer as we shuttled bikes for teens all around our amazing trails here in the Sea to Sky spending days on end biking, shooting photos and simply just enjoying time together. Skateboarding was closely tied into that as so many male and female teens pick up a board this summer. Meeting up most days at the skate park here in Pemberton or packing into the cars and heading to Whistler, the boards were always with us.

Now that we are in the Fall we have shifted a few things around. We are now meeting in smaller groups in the church basement here in Pemberton as it provides us with a larger space that is easier to keep physical distance. We are meeting Tuesday mornings in the church basement from 7:30 – 8:30am to run our campaigner program. This is a time where teens are welcome to join us for breakfast and engage in conversation around life and faith through the christian worldview. We are currently working through a series called Reckless Love, a short video followed by great discussion questions.

On November 19th we are excited to host our first ever Online Video Fundraiser! With covid shutting down our annual Fall banquet we took to the internet. We would love to share the video with you and the congregation to view from the comfort of your own home. I am also excited to share with you that we have a job listing open for a Whistler Staff Associate. We would love to see a staff member with feet on the ground next summer or fall. Someone that will work closely with me to meet teenagers in Whistler, start a campaigners group and build towards a weekly club night.

We will continue to follow closely to the provincial health officials which help our decision making regarding events with teens. Safety is our priority and we will be following all recommended precautions while with teenagers. We are thankful we can still share in small groups or simply meet up with a teenager for a one on one conversation over some hot chocolate. God has been keeping us creative in these times to ensure that we remain in the lives of teenagers.

Thank you for all of your prayer and support,

Josh Dooley
Young Life Area Director, Sea to Sky