66 Years of EYS

From September 23th-25th, 2022 , 44 active and former teamers, camp partners, supporters and companions met at the Helmut-Gollwitzer-Haus in Wünsdorf for the EYS Future Workshop and the 66th anniversary of the Ecumenical Youth Services.

We celebrated what we had achieved (33 years in a divided and 33 years in a united Germany) and planned for the future. After this weekend, we will go into the next 33 years strengthened and already looking forward to the next reunion!
As a reminder: After the 2nd World War, the construction camp movement (now called work camp) spread to all areas of the world.
The emergence of the Ecumenical Reconstruction Camps/ Ecumenical Youth Services (EYS) can be attributed to the Youth Department of the World Council of Churches in Geneva (WCC). Ecumenical Youth Services were organised from various countries, including the former GDR. Today, Ecumenical Youth Services are only offered in Germany. This is the successor organisation to the Ecumenical Youth Services so active in the GDR. This, as the only remaining organisation of EYSs, needed to be celebrated and developed.

It was an international gathering, bringing together people from Austria, Poland, Serbia, Spain, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Germany (Baden-Württemberg, Berlin, Brandenburg, Hesse, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony, NRW, Saxony). Theo was the youngest participant at 3 years old, Martin the oldest at 80.

The aej gave us a special honor with Dirk Thesenvitz (Consultant for Ecumenism and International Youth Work), who gave an impulse on the topic “The EYS and the current state of international youth work” on Saturday morning, as well as Annika Kastner (Head of GPENreformation / EKD Dept. Education), Paskalia Mpairaktari (Board of the Orthodox Youth Federation e.V.), Hannah Weber (Board of the Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe, EYCE) and Julia Daser (State Youth Pastor of the EKBO) as well as Silke Hansen (Director of Studies for Youth Work EKBO).

Many thanks to all the anniversary participants who made their way to the event. And, without the support of the Support Association of Ecumenical Youth Services e.V. before and during the anniversary, this weekend would not have been possible.

Friday from 6 pm:
Arrival, Get to know each other, Exchange
9.30am: Impulse “The EYS and the current state of international youth work
3.00pm: International dances
3.30pm: Future workshop

  • Future perspective 1
    Strengths of the EYS – Challenges the EYS (Work results: Strengths – Challenges)
  • Future perspective 2
    Wishes for/to the OeJD – What are our plans for the next 5 years? Work results: Wishes – Ideas
  • Future perspective 3
    33 years before the fall of the Berlin Wall, 33 years after reunification. This is our basis and history

18.30h: Celebrations and buffet

10am: Anniversary service in the village church of Wünsdorf
(Sermon: Julia Daser, Sermon text: Matthew 18:20: “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”)

Ecumenical Youth Services (EYS)
Karolin Minkner, Camp Coordinator
Telephone +49-(0)30 / 31 91-131
Mobil +49-(0)151 210 630 26
E-Mail workcamp@akd-ekbo.de

Postal Address
Ökumenische Jugenddienste (ÖJD) / Ecumenical Youth Services (EYS)
Amt für kirchliche Dienste
Goethestraße 26-30
D – 10625 Berlin

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