Empowering youth to connect with Christ and each other


Youth Week is the summer event for KEY Conferences (Kanuga Empowered Youth). As one of the longest-running events for youth ministry in the United States, Youth Week brings together youth and adults who work with youth from around the country for a week of fun, friendship and prayer. This Kanuga tradition embodies the vibrancy of the national Episcopal Church and encourages participants to seek authentic connections with Christ and one another. Those who attend are empowered to build community through small group discussions, conference-wide gatherings, music, prayer and play.
KEY Conferences Winterlight Youth Week

June 16th – 21st, 2019

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Experience the inspiration of Kanuga’s Youth Week gathering this summer!
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Three Tracks

Three different, simultaneous tracks offer youth and adults the chance to spend time with similar-aged participants, discussing ideas to lead and inspire their faith communities back home.

JYP: Junior Young People
For students rising in grades 7–9.

JYP Staff Application


SYP: Senior Young People
For students rising in grades 10–12 and recent high school graduates.

SYP Staff Application SYP Torchbearer Application

*The Torchbearer application is for college freshmen or high school graduates who have been out of high school for one year as of June 2019, and who have not previously served on staff at SYP, JYP, or Winterlight. (Cost for Torchbearers is $252 per person.)  All other applicants should use the Staff application.

Mirais Holden, SYP Coordinator

Mirais first experienced Kanuga as a 13-year-old participant of the JYP conference during Kanuga’s summer Youth Week. Just like all Kanuga youth, Mirais was invited into a lifelong, nationwide fellowship of friends, who support one another in exploring their relationships with God and with themselves. Mirais has continued to attend Kanuga’s youth conferences for the past 16 years, serving as a staff member and now as a coordinator of SYP, for the purpose of welcoming today’s youth into that same community. Mirais’ hope is to create a space for youth to experience the sense of belonging, unconditional love, and radical self-acceptance that only Kanuga can offer. When she is not volunteering as a coordinator for KEY Conferences, Mirais works as an attorney in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Kate McDonald, SYP Coordinator

Kate first attended SYP in 2005 on a whim and has returned to KEY Conferences every year since. The inclusive and creative community has been a key player in her growth as a person of faith, and Kate is honored to help create that experience for others. Kate’s experiences at Kanuga have also significantly shaped her professional life as well. She worked in New Orleans, Louisiana to establish food access programming through the Cooking Matters program and now resides in Lexington, Kentucky, where she works for Habitat for Humanity to create community partnerships through volunteerism. Youth Week is her favorite week each year.

Matt Arehart, JYP Coordinator

Matthew was born in Atlanta, Georgia and grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. He was an active member of the youth groups at St. George’s Episcopal in Germantown before coming to Holy Communion in 2002. He then attended the University of Tennessee where he studied religion and art. Upon moving back to Memphis, Matthew took a job designing and building custom furniture and doing furniture repair and restoration for Soule Furniture Restoration. Matthew has served many years on staff at Junior Youth Program (JYP) during Youth Week at Kanuga Conference Center. He also has worked at Episcopal Day Camp (a.k.a. Mud Camp) for more than a decade. By creating a fun safe environment for youth, he hopes that all youth will grow closer to Christ and develop a faith that stays with them as they grow into young adults and continue on their spiritual journeys.

Mallory Nonnemaker, JYP Coordinator

Mallory Nonnemaker attends the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in beautiful downtown Sautee Nacoochee, GA where she also serves on the Diocese of Atlanta’s New Beginnings Steering Committee. She loves spending time with 7-12 graders so much she spends her days teaching them Theatre. Mallory is excited to work to bring all involved in JYP closer to God’s Love.

AWWWY: Adults Who Work with Youth
For anyone who is connected with teenagers in the church, including youth ministers, Sunday school teachers, confirmation mentors, clergy or laity. Enjoy a week of continuing education on leadership roles, recreation and networking with volunteer and professional youth leaders from across the country.

Details & Registration

Rates: All fees are per person and include over night lodging and meals
AWWWY Adult Double (Shared Room) – $560.00
AWWWY Adult Single (Private Room) – $740.00
JYP: Junior Young People (Students Rising in Grades 7-9) – $525.00
SYP: Senior Young People (Students Rising in Grades 10-12 & Recent High School Graduates) –$525.00
**Register by April 8, 2019 to receive a 10% Early Bird discount.

Contact rjones@kanuga.org for group rates

Scholarship Request

Please contact Jackie Albritton, Hospitality Specialist, with all questions regarding registration, lodging and payment at 828-233-2815 or jalbritton@kanuga.org

For more information regarding program content or scholarships, please contact Director of Formation Programs and Resident Chaplain Richmond Jones at  828-692-9136, ext. 2745, or rjones@kanuga.org.