New Mexico is known for its high altitude and intense sunlight. Among other things, these conditions produce excellent solar energy and deliciously hot chiles. This summer has been quite the scorcher, temperatures hovering in the triple digits – above average from most summers.
The blazing sun didn’t detract the overall feeling of joy and gratitude as approximately 600 youth and 250 adult leaders weeded and cleaned the grounds of 6 Albuquerque Westside neighborhood public schools. In fact, the highlight of the youth conference for many was the ambitious service project that the youth undertook.
On the final morning of the conference – Saturday, July 14th – the grounds of Rio Rancho High School, Cleveland High School, Mountain View Middle School, Rio Rancho Middle School, Eagle Ridge Middle School and Maggie Cordova Elementary School, were completely weeded and cleaned. Preparing for students to return to a beautiful campus when school resumes in August.
Anyone observing the youth performing this service would be impressed with not only their hard work ethic but also their jovial countenance. The youth exuded and expressed their Christ-like love throughout the conference. But this was especially highlighted when given an opportunity to serve. “It feels great to work hard and give back to my community.”, said Rachel Wittwer a laurel from the Albuquerque Stake.
Youth Conference is a time where teens aged 14-18 gather to learn more about the gospel, socialize with their peers and strengthen their testimonies of Jesus Christ. This year, teens in the Albuquerque, Los Lunas, Rio Rancho & Santa Fe areas gathered for 3-days as one congregation, in a multi-stake combined youth conference.