File photo: Students sing during See You at the Pole Pre-Pole Rally Wednesday, September 18, 2019, at Faith Assembly in Imperial.

EL CENTRO — Campus Life organizers presented an evening of music, prayer, and a message to viewers who tuned-in via social media outlets direct from First Christian Church in El Centro Wednesday, September 16. 

“See You at The Pole” is a student led gathering for prayer on the fourth Wednesday of September prior to the start of the school year. One week prior to the rally, Campus Life organized a pre-pole rally to draw crowds for the main event. 

“This is to get as many students and teams excited at the See You at The Pole next Wednesday,” said Jeremiah Vik, Campus Life executive director. The pre-pole rally and the SYTP event are all student led. 

According to Vik, this year’s theme is Return-Restore-Revive. 

Safety precautions due to COVID-19 have restricted gatherings and assemblies. But the pre-pole rally proceeded using available technology — computers and software applications that allowed live broadcasting and viewing by students on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram apps in the comfort of their homes or with youth groups.  

According to Vik, there were student youth groups who tuned in from Christ Community Church, First Christian Church, Calvary Chapel in El Centro, and Cornerstone Community Church in Holtville. 

Leena Jones, campus ministry director of Campus Life Imperial Valley, welcomed viewers watching on live broadcast through social media. She led in the opening prayer, which was followed by REACH Student Ministries, a youth group worship band from Christ Community Church. 

Between songs, a promotional See You at The Pole video was shown, and students representing cities in Imperial Valley prayed for their particular geographical areas. Blake Riley prayed on behalf of Brawley; Isabella Burns, Holtville; Karina Gutierrez, El Centro; and Christine Murphy, Imperial. 

The importance of invitation was the main message of the evening by Jimmy Gomez, youth pastor, Faith Assembly in Imperial. He cited a scripture passage from the book of Luke chapter 19 where Jesus Christ invited himself to go to the home of Zaccheus, a Jewish tax collector for the Romans. The invitation changed the life of Zaccheus. 

From this reference, Gomez, charged his viewers to reach out to their friends and invite them to next week’s See You at The Pole rally. “We are the byproducts of some invitation. The power is in the invite.” 

Campus Life is a ministry that reaches out to junior and high school students in Imperial Valley. It has four ministries: KYFC 95.3 FM The Edge radio station; Parent Life — to reach out to expecting teen mothers and parenting tees; Juvenile Justice — a ministry directed to those in detention centers; and See You at The Pole — a local version of the annual national event. 

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