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Opportunities remain for volunteers to participate in Chicago outreach

CHICAGO (BP)-For churches and individuals still seeking an outlet for volunteer missions this summer, plenty of opportunities remain for involvement in Chicago’s Strategic Focus Cities/Celebrate Jesus 2000 evangelism and church starting effort.

One of the biggest opportunities for one-day involvement is through SearchLight, the July 8 evangelistic emphasis encompassing numerous activities throughout the area, noted volunteer coordinator Danny Hester. Thousands of volunteers are expected to participate.

For groups able to spend a week or so, one of the greatest needs currently is for 300 volunteers to help with a week of evangelistic sports camps in the Lake County Baptist Association. Simultaneous sports camps are being sponsored in baseball, basketball, soccer and possibly football, Hester said.

There are needs for those skilled in sports to serve as instructors, as well as others to serve in support roles. “We need people to get groups of kids from one place to another and just kind of manage all the people that will be involved,” he said.

Also still needed are groups willing to help conduct Vacation Bible Schools or Backyard Bible Clubs in cooperation with local churches. Several inner-city churches, he said, plan three or four back-to-back Vacation Bible Schools to make a lasting impact on children — if enough volunteers can be enlisted to help.

Other opportunities include:

— Block parties. Many mission groups doing sports clinics or Vacation Bible Schools also will be able to participate in block parties one night during their stay.

— Drama, puppet, music or art presentations. Public performances and demonstrations are being used by some churches as a means of sharing the gospel.

— Community surveys. With more than 80 new mission congregations currently being formed with the help of Strategic Focus Cities/Celebrate Jesus 2000, many church planters are requesting help surveying their communities to assess needs, locate prospects and share Christ.

For information on these and other opportunities related to Celebrate Jesus 2000/Strategic Focus Cities effort in Chicago, visit the www.chicago2000.net Internet site or call 1-800-645-2412.

    About the Author

  • James Dotson