EL CENTRO â€“ It was a spectacular sight as a multitude of students and adults gathered at Christ Community Church in El Centro, Wednesday September 16, for Youth for Christâ€™s (YFC) annual Pre-Pole Rally. It was special time of worship and prayer for the 2015-16 school year Valley-wide.
The Pre-Pole Rally is the kick-off for See You at the Pole (SYATP), a nationwide event where students get together and pray for their schools at their campus flagpoles, hence the name. On this particular night, Imperial Valley students were in attendance as they represented their schools respectively; from El Centro Union to Calexico High, Southwest to Calipatria.
These are no ordinary students, however. They are the born-again believers and vessels for the Lord Jesus Christ, and their goal and prayer is to live as examples and reach out to the lost on their school campuses.
The theme of this yearâ€™s SYATP is â€œUnitedâ€ which is derived from a verse in the book of Acts, chapter one: â€œThey all met together and were united in prayerâ€¦â€
At the rally, the sound of uplifting music filled the auditorium as the worship band, led by Jesus â€œZeusâ€ Reyes, played. In between songs, two student leaders from YFCâ€™s Campus Life ministry took the stage and led the attendees in a moment of prayer for various schools in the Valley. The event also featured a closing message delivered by Campus Life corps staff member and Imperial Valley College teacher Aaron Abubo.
Campus Life middle school director, Leena Malane, was in attendance and spoke highly of the students who stood up boldly to pray for their campuses.
â€œItâ€™s always great to see students step up and pray for their cities and their schools. Thatâ€™s always awesome. We ask different students every year, so thatâ€™s really cool to see kids get out of their comfort zones and be challenged to pray in front of a group of people,â€ Malane said.
Southwest High School senior Georgina Gonzalez was one of the student leaders who stood and prayed for the schools at the event.
â€œAt first it was a little nerve breaking, but then I remembered that it was for the Lord and it helped me,â€ said Gonzalez.
Through the ministry of Campus Life, students like Georgina Gonzalez, will create a safe environment for teens to talk about the struggles that they face in everyday life through a curriculum provided by the national office of YFC, while spreading the Gospel and sharing the love of Christ in their campuses.
When asked what she loves the most about being in involved in the Campus Life ministry, Gonzales replied, â€œJust sharing the love of the Lord with people and showing them that somebody does care and that theyâ€™re not alone and that we all face the same problems.â€
Campus Life clubs officially begin the same day as the SYATP event, September 23, 2015.
Leena Malane commented regarding the expectations of the impact Campus Life clubs will have in the Valley. â€œI personally have given this year to God and I expect the Gospel to be spread.â€
â€œAs far as how many kids will accept Christâ€™s love for us, or the gift of Salvation, is not something I can put in numbers,â€ Malane added.