Fellowship of Christian Athletes holds UNITE event

| October 9, 2017

COSHOCTON – The cafeteria at Ridgewood High School was full Sunday, Oct. 8 for the second FCA event this year. Almost 80 area high school students gathered to play games, meet new friends, listen to a speaker and share their Christian faith.

Deb Strasser and her husband, John, are the area representatives for FCA. “Our main goal is to bring hope and encouragement to students, administrators and athletes.” The local FCA membership is growing. “We have had several more school districts contact us about starting a group at their school, too.” The Strassers find chaplains and volunteers for each chapter to run the weekly meetings. “We can’t be at every school, every week, so we find volunteers to be there.”

Every school district chapter of FCA has a weekly meeting during the school day, usually during the students’ enrichment period. The group is open to all students, not just athletes. “We have been saying ‘FCA and More’ to make sure everyone knows they are welcome to join.” Deb said they have had many inquiries about junior high students joining the group. They are working on plans to make this possible.

“We have great kids in FCA. They aren’t afraid to stand up and be leaders. I have really enjoyed getting to know each of them,” said Deb.

One of the students attending the event Sunday evening was Luke Brown. This is his second year as a member of FCA. Brown likes being part of this group because it allows him to be faithful inside school. “In today’s society, we aren’t supposed to show faith in school. I like being part of it because it means I can show my faith.” Brown said joining FCA gets him out of his comfort zone and helps him be more comfortable talking to his friends about his faith.

Christa Lain is a first year member of FCA. “School activities are very secular.  Being in a school group with a Christian influence is just great.” Lain said she has always firmly believed people should love others. “This is another way to be with a group that believes the same as me. The fellowship is nice. I like being around people who believe Jesus is as important as I do.”

Racheal Robbins and Olivia Allen are students at Ridgewood and attended the event together. Robbins just moved to the area. “This is a great community and a great bonding experience. It offers me support to find other Christians.” Robbins said this experience has enabled her to be more comfortable talking to her friends about her faith. Allen is also in her first year of FCA. “This is a great way to meet other Christians and spread the word of Jesus. Big groups can spread His word faster than just one person.”

Both Robbins and Allen attend the weekly meetings at RHS. The meetings are about 40 minutes. They usually have donuts, pray and someone shares a message of faith. They both agree that more students are coming to the meetings every week.

The speaker for the evening was Alexa Norris. She is a campus missionary at Ohio State University. She works in the H2O Church as a worship director. As a missionary, her main goal is to meet with women and share the gospel. “I think FCA is a beautiful program. I wish River View had had it when I was a student there.” She was saved in the H2O Church when she was a junior in college and wanted to continue to be part of program.

She shared practical ways for students in high school to live their faith and share the gospel with others. She had four tips for the students. “Number four is to get help. Find someone to help you grow your faith. Number three is to read the Bible. Number two is to pray. Everyone knows how to pray – talk to God like He is your dad. Number one is to know, understand and accept the gospel. You can’t live out your faith if you don’t know what it is.”

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About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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