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Young Adults at GA, General Assembly 2014

General Assembly 2014 Event 503

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This report is part of a longer event. Go to General Session VII for the complete video and order of business.


JIM KEY: So welcome back, Jonathan Rogers, for another GA Talk. Come on, Jonathan.

JONATHAN ROGERS: Thank you, Jim. Hello again. My name is Jonathan Rogers. I'm the program coordinator for young adults at General Assembly. And I'd like to tell you a little bit more about GA Talks initiative, with its inaugural happening here, these last three days in GA—in specific, the ones in Rhode Island Convention Center Hall C that the young adults at General Assembly have been putting on.

I'd like to call your attention, just for a moment, to the unique nature of the ones that have been happening over there, that are different in their staging, in the length of time that we're giving to those ideas, and in particular, in the fact that we will be video recording them, or we have been video recording them Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Those video recordings will be going up online, and you can find them later this summer at the youth and young adult Blue Boat blog. So please go check that out. You can see the ideas that have been shared here at GA, through GA Talks. And you can spread them—help them to go viral.

If you were able to join us in Hall C over the last few days, you were able to join us in singing "Building a New Way," as we built a new way. If you were swept away by the stories in the dynamic presentations that we had going on in there, then you know what a dynamic initiative this was. When we first came up with the idea, last year, we knew that there were so, so many voices within Unitarian Universalism, that would fit this format, that would rise to the occasion of the venue. But seeing and hearing them all come together this week has been more inspiring and rewarding than any of us could have possibly imagined.

There were so many moments, so many peak experiences that came out of bringing these amazing speakers onto the big stage. I found myself, many, many times over the last few days, recalling what Moderator Key described about GA Talks on Wednesday evening, in this space, saying that they were ideas worth spreading. And what would happen would be that one of our presenters would go up and give an encapsulation of the idea behind their project, whether it was Reverend Erik Martinez Resly talking about putting the style in lifestyle and how that's helped to shape the sanctuaries, or yesterday, Hilary Allen and Sue Phillips talking about how their process of developing Faithify, the UU crowdfunding website, has in and of itself been an example of the kind of experimentation that they're trying to promote with that website, of the kind of initiatives that they want people to be able to have the resources to take on within our faith movement. And what would happen—they would give a kind of a poignant moment with that, and someone in the audience would tweet it using #gatalks. And I would be getting, collecting all of those tweets, to be able to share up on stage. But they would have a 140 character encapsulation of what had just been shared on stage that then was going out into the world for folks who were not with us.

You can go, and at, do a #gatalks search and see the hundreds of those kinds of moments that we've been able to encapsulate with GA Talks, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. You can just jump over and see. We had people quoting our presenters again and again, asking them questions, engaging with their ideas. So I very much—I encourage you to connect with us that way. Just do a Twitter search for #gatalks. You'll see the many, many moments that came out of it, and you'll be able to, again, see those videos, maybe getting an opportunity to look at them online once they are posted—again, later this summer. You'll be inspired to go and see what was said in the moment, on Twitter, with #gatalks.

Just like with the Ted Talks, we want the videos that come out of those to be well produced and to be shared. And we are going to be working, after the conclusion of GA and throughout this year and into the next GA, to put ourselves in the best position to be able to do that, again, well, next year, and hopefully even better. So I very much encourage you to check out those videos online and to take a look, again, next year, here at GA.

I know—I know that some midweek evening, between now and next June, when you're looking for an uplifting reminder of who we are as a faith movement, of what it was like either to have been here at GA or to have watched the awesome live streams online, and when you're looking for that moment, I encourage you to head over to the Blue Boat blog and check out our GA Talks videos.

You'll probably be able to do a YouTube search for them, once we've got them up. One way or another, you can find them. You can pass them along and bask in all of the Facebook likes that you'll get for sharing the link there. And it'll be, you know, a small sliver of having been back here.

So once again, please check those videos out online. Please join us again, next year, for GA Talks which will, once again, be sponsored by the young adults at General Assembly. And thank you so much for your support this year.