Culture -

God drops opportunity in the mail —

By Becca Haines

Debbie Detwiler – a volunteer youth leader with Calvary Baptist Church in Elkhart, Indiana – said she’s been praying for ways her youth group can serve, have fun and strengthen relationships.

She said this fall it was as if the Lord put an opportunity to do just that in her hands … literally.

 

Detwiler is also a mail carrier in Bristol, Indiana, and while she was on her route she glanced down at a magazine called “Kingdom Worker Connection.” She quickly jotted down the website for ciy.com, and later that day looked up the ministry online with her husband, Steve.

 

“We quickly fell in love with the creed and loved the pastors’ reviews and statements about the ministry,” she said. “Four years ago my husband and I saw a need for a youth group at our church and now we’re handling a group of kids from dysfunctional families. The whole group is unchurched people. We’ve struggled to get them through their hurt and rejection to see there’s a God that’s good and loves them. It’s been difficult. My heart goes out to them because they go home and don’t get that re-enforcement of the Word.”

 

Every Sunday morning and Wednesday evening the Detwilers drive a bus across the Elkhart region to pick up a group of about 10 kids – ages 9-16 – because otherwise they wouldn’t be able to attend. Debbie Detwiler said she loves the impressionable junior high age but it’s also not easy to break down the walls around their hearts.

 

“We spend a lot of time in prayer for these kids,” she said. “I think that’s why CIY caught my eye. Our goal is for kids to see the good in helping others. The Lord needs servants, and we know the truth – in the end the Lord wins. We have hope the light will come on for some of them and we know a lot of powerful experiences can happen in a weekend or week-long youth conference.”