Many guests arrived this weekend, January 20-21, at Campion Church eager to be inspired by the iMPACT young adult rally. The rally, organized by a group led by Campion Academy’s recruiter, Jessica Rios, invited young adults from all over the Rocky Mountain Conference to come and learn the divine tactics of reaching out to the community and fulfilling the mission of the Seventh-day Adventist church.
The aim of iMPACT is to teach young people to be motivated to find their purpose in life and stand firmly in their faith to share the gospel throughout all the world.
The weekend event was launched with a hard-hitting introduction by humble and powerful evangelist, Taj Pacleb. Throughout the weekend were a variety of seminars lead by other well-known pastors like Daniel Birai of the Fort Collins church and Micheal Goetz from our own Campion church.
iMPACT highlights the reason we are all here, and why it is time to go home. Cassie Carr, a senior, attended all the meetings led by Pacleb in which she learned that “Anyone and everyone can be a missionary for Christ. It doesn’t matter who you are, if you make yourself available to God, He will transform you to be whoever you need to be to reach out to a person. He makes us qualified."
Another senior, Natalie Boonstra relates to this when she reflects on a testimony Pacleb shared of a lost friend. “It was encouraging to know that even the most on-fire people slip up, and God uses us to minister to them,” she says.
Celine Lumowa is a senior at Campion Academy
Campion Church and Campion Academy are working together to “Encourage the growth of a generation that knows how to connect with a local church, become involved, and join in the mission,” as explained by Campion chaplain Rob Carlson.
The church encourages students to be involved throughout the year by identifying at least 10 possibilities for church participation. They’ve provided students with contact information for church members who can get them involved in everything from greeting, to music, to ushering, to welcoming families with the parking team. (The freshmen parking ministry greets and directs new visitors, helps carry potluck food, and provides umbrellas when needed.) “I love this church. They let us be involved,” says senior Celine Lumowa, who leads one of the praise teams for the academy’s weekly chapels and vespers. She helps with the church praise teams, too.
“It’s exciting to be somewhere where there’s a desire for the church and school to work together,” says Carlson. He works with the spiritual life committee, made up of the school principals from Campion and HMS, church pastors, and Bible teachers, who meet together once a month to vision and implement the spiritual goals on Campion’s campus. Together, they have focused on how to provide opportunities for students to get involved in church and other spiritual activities.
On the academy campus, students attend chapel, vespers, and Sparks each week. Sparks is a student-led, co-ed evening worship usually featuring testimonies given by students. Not only do students get a chance to share at Sparks, they’re in charge of planning it, too.
An additional gathering called Fusion meets once a week to provide students the chance to pursue a particular topic of study, whether it’s learning about spiritual disciplines, reading Beautiful Outlaw, practicing sermons, or learning about time management and devotions from church members Sandy Eickmann and Dick Stenbakken.
“The biggest thing right now is Fusion,” says student chaplain Diana Miranda. Over the last three weeks, her Fusion group has been reading through Beautiful Outlaw by John Eldredge. “It was a really nice time to read about who God is and have teenagers interested in a book that is understandable.”
Perhaps more than anything, Carlson is excited about the teamwork involved in leading students to know Christ. Not only are adult leaders involved, but many students—the dorm chaplains, class pastors, and others—meet for supper once a week to discuss ministry. “We talk about what we struggle with, what we want to change, and what awesome spiritual things are happening in the student body,” says senior Celine Lumowa. No one has to struggle to lead alone, they are joined by a team passionate about helping others in their Christian walk.
Jenny Sigler teaches English at Campion Academy
“God works with people, and He molds people, and He fixes people.” Last night Chezney Barry, a senior, shared a message concerning health. She started off by pointing out that sometimes we think that being healthy is on a checklist of requirements to get to heaven. It’s not. God encourages us to be healthy because “we are God’s masterpiece,” and he wants the best for us.
“How we take care of our body,” Chezney says, “relates directly to how we think.” God wants us to have clear minds because He loves us. He isn’t trying to take the fun out of eating or put us behind bars by restricting us.
Chezney introduced the second part of her sermon by pointing to Ephesians 5:18, which states, “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.” She told us of how, when she was six, she was in a car accident involving her mom and brother when her mom was under the influence. Addiction is something we link to drinking and drugs, but addiction to things like sugar and caffeine are just as real.
She finished by reminding us that God looks at all sin equally, and addiction to unhealthy food is something we need to own up to and take charge of.
For someone who was joking around earlier that evening about how unhealthy I was, Chezney’s sermon put me to shame. Health isn’t something that we should just be obligated to watch. It’s a gift of will. I’m young, so I can’t see the effects now, but I know they’ll come around. I’m glad that God gave Chezney the words to take off my rose-tinted glasses and view my health in a new light.
Cassie Fazio is a senior at Campion Academy
Senior Gabrielle Williams spoke with passion and clarity to a full tent of students and visitors Friday, May 6, for the opening night of Wildfire, Campion's week of prayer and evangelism. Is God Real? "Yes," she shared, "and He loves you and offers a wonderful plan for your life." Our part is to accept the salvation He offers. Of all the different religions, Christianity is the only religion that believes we can't save ourselves: we need a Savior.
Gabrielle went on to explain how God sent Jesus, His one and only Son to save us. Even though accepting a Savior should be easy, since we are unused to free things, acceptance can be difficult. To prove her point, she asked for a volunteer to come up to the microphone. After a long pause, a fellow student reluctantly came forward to discover he was the recipient of $20 cash.
Campion senior Alyse Maxwell said "Something that stood out to me is that even though we don't feel accepted, that doesn't mean that we aren't. You can't allow your emotions to control your faith."
Freshman Joe Philpott gave his heart to the Lord and was baptized at the end of Gabrielle's presentation.
Rayna Williams said "I was touched by just about everything she said tonight, especially when she brought out the point that God uses His strength to overcome our weaknesses. God is definitely not dead."
Is salvation really as easy as accepting a gift? Come and hear what teenagers are saying about some of Christianity's toughest questions. Seven students will be preaching over the course of the next week, after weeks of preparation and coaching from local Adventist pastors. Not only are Campion students attending these meetings as part of their week of prayer, but the community has been invited as well, through flyers and personal invitations. Between 8-12 non-Adventists attended the first night.
Location: big tent on the lawn of HMS Richards School
Time: 7-8:00pm May 6-13 (no meeting on May 8, Mothers Day)
Wes Carle and Jennifer Sigler
photos: Bryant Oei and Jennifer Sigler
Four teams made up of two students each head to HMS Richards School from Campion Academy each week to give Bible studies to 7th and 8th graders. These 7th and 8th graders, in turn, give Bible studies to the 4th through 6th graders.
The Campion students are members of Joe Martin’s junior Bible class where they have been studying the 28 Fundamental Beliefs since the beginning of the school year.
After studying one of the beliefs, Martin has his students choose seven Bible verses on that topic that are clearest to them and which they can use in their studies with the younger students. They are creating their own Bible studies.
“Although for many of these juniors giving Bible studies is out of their comfort zone, this group is thoroughly enjoying sharing their faith and praying with the kids, many of whom have never prayed before with strangers, says Martin. They are “enhancing their walk with God by sharing their faith,” he finishes.
All 43 of Martin’s junior Bible class students will have the opportunity to give Bible studies. In turn, all 14 of the 7th and 8th graders at HMS will have the opportunity to receive studies and then to give them to the 22 4th through 6th graders at HMS.
Ashley Halvorson, a 14-year-old 8th grader at HMS, has enjoyed receiving Bible studies from Campion students. “They did a really good job giving them to us,” she states. They had a lot of Bible verses for us to look up” [on] the Second Coming and what happens when you die,” she shares. “I think it’s fun to tell other people about our beliefs,” Ashley says “and to see God work through us.”
Christine Eagan-Foster, a 12-year-old 6th grader at HMS, received Bible studies from two girls in 7th and 8th grade, one on baptism. “It’s really fun that we can get taught about these teachings and interact about them. We even learn more than we learned at home. It’s nice to get a kid’s perspective on it,” she shares.
“By the time the HMS students have experienced this [give and take of beliefs] for a couple of years, they will be ready for baptism,” states Davin Hammond, principal of HMS. “We want every 7th and 8th grader to recognize that they can give Bible studies,” he adds.
Junior Bible students Cassie Carr and Natalie Boonstra, both raised in pastoral homes, believe the things they are learning in the class strengthen what their parents have taught them.
“The Bible class with Pastor Joe has helped me to know God on a more personal level,” shares Natalie. “Bible class has helped me develop in my Christian walk and to prove my faith.”
“We mark our Bibles with several verses to support each topic and cross reference them,” says Cassie. This gives us the tools to share with whomever we come into contact with. The junior class,” she says, “is coming closer to God because of this class and it is noticed all over campus.”
Martin has long had a burden to disciple young people and has worked with the student literature program for more than 25 years. A new federal law, however, that limits the age students can work to 16 and prevents them from working before 3 p.m. has made it more difficult to carry on this program with some students.
“The devil tried to close the door of evangelism” through this law states Martin, “but God opened a bigger door to evangelize our youth. Now we are placing the Scriptures in front of many of our youth who would never have opened them had the literature evangelism door not been closed. I’m having more influence with more kids in class than with LEs,” Martin enthuses.
Carol Bolden is RMC administrative assistant for communication
This story first appeared in Mountain Views, a publication of Rocky Mountain Conference of SDAs.
By Gabrielle Williams and Jennifer Sigler
Over spring break, 37 volunteers from Campion Academy and Wichita Adventist Christian Academy flew to Belize to serve the campus of Belize Adventist Junior College (BAJC) in Calcutta, where they’ve been visiting annually for over ten years. Mission groups to BAJC usually focus on a construction project and Vacation Bible School meetings. This year, led by Jim Lynch, the group made immense progress on the library, a project begun several years ago, and on week nights they hosted games, crafts, story time, and singing for kids of all ages. On the last weekend, they passed out shoes and clothes to a local village.
“When we give of ourselves, we end up receiving more than we could have ever imagined. We experience pure joy and peace. Helping others is one of the greatest callings that Jesus gives us,” said Campion senior Gabrielle Williams, who went to Belize for the second time. “It is more blessed to give than to receive; however, what you do receive when you give is an unexplainable joy that only Jesus can give,” she added.
“Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (Matthew 25:40).
Slideshow by Leslie Bergmann