Despite the blazing heat, community youth and adults gathered at Baldwin Park last Saturday for an outreach event with a singular goal - unity. The event kicked-off with some crazy, camp-style games in which youth worked both individually and together as teammates. After all, there’s no better way to break the ice than by acting out silly commands like “dead turtle” side by side. Afterwards, participants were invited to grab a plate of food before moving into a time of worship and teaching.
The event speaker drew from his own past experience with alcohol and poor choices to deliver a powerful reminder for youth that they are responsible for their own choices, and that those choices will greatly impact not only their own futures, but possibly even others’ futures and the future of this town, also.
Local leaders and pastors believe it’s important to gather the youth of the community to help them make connections both with one another and with the community as a whole. According to organizer, Hugh Taylor, the purpose of the event was “to win this community back for the next generation.”
Parent Cassie James commented, “Youth events are important to us because we need to reach out and teach the kids about Jesus. Today’s kids are tomorrow’s leaders, and they deserve to know they’re loved and respected. We hope to involve the entire community because we’re all brothers and sisters in Christ, and this community needs some solidarity. We want to reach people, not make them feel as if they don’t belong with us.”
What better way to encourage unity than to gather young people and show them positive ways to have fun together, as well as speak to them about the future? Local pastors plan to host another such event this Fall and hope that even more people will join in encouraging the young people of our community! Anyone who would like to help plan or volunteer at the next community youth event can contact Pastor Hugh Taylor at 765-329-0869or Pastor Jeremy Stults at 765-499-8644.