Special to The Flash
CARRIE NORMAND/Cross Timbers FCA
STEPHENVILLE – Students from Stephenville and the Cross Timbers area will be joining thousands of other youth on athletic fields all across the nation on Wednesday, October 12, 2016, to share their Christian faith with fellow students during the tenth annual national Fields of Faith event. This rapidly-growing, interdenominational outreach event will be held at more than 450 locations throughout the nation on this same date.
While many Christian rallies are anchored to an entertainer or professional speaker that creates a spectator event, Fields of Faith is structured as a student-to-student ministry. Peers invite their own classmates and teammates to meet on their school’s athletic field to hear fellow students share their testimonies, challenge them to read the Bible and to come to faith in Jesus Christ.
Last year, approximately 1,500 students and supporters attended at Tarleton’s Memorial Stadium.
The national growth of Fields of Faith has been remarkable. Since the beginning of Fields of Faith in 2004, over a million people have joined in the movement. In 2013 alone, more than 170,000 students gathered on 463 fields to participate in the event.
It’s not just those numbers that have FCA organizers excited about Fields of Faith. It’s the real-life impact that these gatherings are having on young people. Last year’s series of events saw 5,397 students make first-time faith commitments to follow Jesus Christ, 7,921 recommitted their life to Christ and 9,834 committed to reading the Bible daily.
“The impact of Fields of Faith has been incredible in just these past few years,” said Les Steckel, FCA president and former veteran NFL coach. “It’s all about young people in these communities coming together on their school’s athletic field and challenging each other to go back to the fundamentals of reading God’s Word and coming to faith in Jesus Christ.”
The impetus for Fields of Faith began with Jeff Martin, an FCA staff person, who conceived the idea from an Old Testament reference in 2 Chronicles 34 after searching how to help today’s generation of students face spiritual battles and temptations. In the scripture, King Josiah, an influential teenager very similar to Fields of Faith attendees today, gathered his people and challenged them to read the Bible. As a result, they changed their culture.
In 2004, the Josiah-influenced dream came true when 6,000 students gathered on school athletic fields throughout three states for the first Fields of Faith event. That was the beginning of what has become one of the most significant faith-related gathering of students in a single day.
“Fields of Faith challenges this generation to be committed to reading the Bible and living a transformed life for Jesus Christ,” said Martin. “It’s students challenging students, peers challenging peers and that’s the heart and soul of Fields of Faith.”
While Fields of Faith has its roots with FCA leadership, the event is designed to include multiple national Christian organizations, local churches and ministries. A local leadership team will determine the program of each Fields of Faith event.
More information about Fields of Faith is available at FieldsofFaith.com. To learn more about the event in Stephenville, contact FCA Staff Representative, Carrie Normand at firstname.lastname@example.org.