One man’s story is another man’s dream. With the help of Coach Heather Richters, Italy High School Head Volleyball and Track Coach, Willis Field was transposed from a frightful playing field on Friday nights to a gentle meeting place for over 180 Christian students, hailing from Hubbard, Frost, Milford, Blooming Grove and Italy.
Busy with singing, testimonies, camaraderie and careful prayer on Wednesday night, the group came together as one. “When I became the FCA sponsor, I knew immediately it was something that I wanted to do for the kids here. I figured it would be a great way for kids to interact with each other out of a church atmosphere and put them somewhere that is comfortable to them. Hoping that some would let their guards down for Christ,” Richters said.
The Italy Ministerial Alliance, area towns and high schools joined hands and their hearts and lifted up the name of Christ in unison on Wednesday night. Student led, the 7th-12th grades were guided through singing and testimonies. Local junior Mary Tate had a personal testimony that the touched the heart of everyone. Nathan Clickscales, college sophomore, challenged everyone to take a deep look at their lives and be the best that God wants and has planned. Coach Jeff Richters offered the students a commitment card to read the Gospel of John, 21 1/2 chapters in the same days. “It only takes 7 days to create a habit and just think what reading the Bible would do for you in this amount of time,” Richters said.
What is Fields of Faith?
On their website, the history of Fields of Faith has a simplistic beginning.
“It is estimated that more than 80% of youth who attend church will stop going between the seventh and 12th grades. It seems we are losing the spiritual battle in America. The question that must be asked is if we have more ministry opportunities than ever before, why are we experiencing so many setbacks in the spiritual realm? An inspired start in 2002, Oklahoma Fellowship of Christian Athletes Area Director, Jeff Martin, prayed about what to do with his heartfelt frustration regarding the temptations and spiritual battles facing our more “spectator generation” youth. God led him to 2 Chronicles 34 for the answer. King Josiah, an influential teenager, gathered his people and challenged them to read God’s Word. As a result, they changed their culture. When a team is losing, they go back to the fundamentals. They don’t make their game plan more complex. That was God’s answer to Jeff’s prayer: bring kids back to the fundamentals of the ‘game plan of life,’ His Word.”
Music was provided by the Frost First Baptist Praise & Worship Band and Jeremy JRide Beggs. The next meeting of FCA for the local Italy chapter will be Monday, October 18 at 7pm in the old gym.