Church youth group hungry for service projects

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Food may be plentiful here, but in other parts of the world, it sometimes is impossible to know when the next meal may come.

With this in mind, the youth group at First Christian Church is preparing for the 30 Hours of Famine Outreach Program at the end of February.

The youth group's members are collecting donations to help feed the hungry across the globe and help the needy in Craig. During the famine, the teens will perform service projects throughout the city.

This marks the third year Erin Bennett has participated in the famine.

"There's so many people all over the world who don't get to eat everyday, and they don't even know when to look forward to their next meal, because they don't know when their next meal is," Bennett said.

The youth group members' last meal before the fast will be lunch at school Feb. 25. After school, they go to First Christian Church for songs, worship and games. They don't get to eat again until Saturday evening.

The first time Bennett fasted for 30 hours, it wasn't that hard, she said. But the second time she started experiencing hunger pains by midmorning the next day. It gave her some indication of what people in famine-stricken countries suffer every day.

Youth pastor John Grolier has participated in 30-hour famines before he came to Craig.

The event is sponsored by World Vision, a Christian charity that assists more than 85 million people in 100 countries fight poverty and hunger.

People across the United States will participate in the fast Feb. 25 and 26.

Last year, about 50 people participated at First Christian Church, Grolier said.

"For many, it's the first time they felt hunger pains," Grolier said.

Everyone can drink as much water as they want to, and many drink juices to get by, Grolier said.

The projects help keep everyone's mind off the hunger. Last year, when Bennett felt so hungry, the group didn't have as many projects to do.

Group members are soliciting service project ideas from the community. Previous projects have included painting rooms for the elderly and cutting down dead trees for those unable to do it themselves.

Twenty-five percent of the money the group raises will be distributed in Craig by Love INC, a branch of World Version. The remaining 3/4 will be distributed in Third World countries by World Vision.

Anyone interested in sponsoring the event or who has a service project idea can contact First Christian Church at 824-6024 or craigfcc@craigfcc.org.

Rob Gebhart can be reached at 824-7031 or rgebhart@craigdailypress.com.

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