Saw You at the PolePublished 6:05am Saturday, September 29, 2012
Students across the county gathered Wednesday morning for the annual “See You at the Pole” event, but several churches in the area were just as excited about a follow-up event that was held for the first time this year.
The first annual “Saw You at the Pole” was held at First United Methodist Church in downtown Russellville as a way to continue the prayers and worship local high school students started at 7 a.m. that morning.
FUMC-Russellville youth leader Elliott Gordon said even though their church hosted the event in their Ministry Center, other churches participated as well.
“We had over 250 students from our church, First Baptist Russellville, Calvary Baptist, Divine Baptist and others who all came together to worship,” Gordon said. “Our youth band, ‘Redeemed,’ performed along with Calvary’s youth band, ‘Face Down,’ and their drama team and local singer Kody Madden. It was a great night for the Christian community in our town.”
Gordon said his wife, Ponda, had heard about similar events held in other cities and thought it would be something good for Russellville churches to participate in.
“We’ve never had anything like this to follow-up to See You at the Pole, so when Ponda mentioned it to me, I thought it would be a great idea,” Gordon said. “I immediately started getting in contact with other youth ministers in the area to see if they wanted to join in.”
Ryan Mouser, youth minister at Calvary, said he was immediately on board with the idea.
“This is a great opportunity for students who might have had questions about what was going on that morning at See You at the Pole to come and find out more about Jesus and why we were all praying,” Mouser said. “It just keeps the dialogue going.
“It also is a good way to bring all the churches in the community together, no matter the denomination, and not have everyone divided.”
Gordon said it’s a good ministry tool as well.
“Just as See You at the Pole is a way to open the door for a Christian student to witness to someone, Saw You at the Pole is an event a Christian student can invite their friends to in the hopes that they will enjoy the service and continue coming to church with them,” Gordon said.
“I know of two sisters who have given their life to Christ because they were invited to retreats and events similar to this, so we’ve personally seen people’s lives changed just because someone was willing to invite them to an event and some church was willing to host or be part of the event they were invited to.”
He added that plans were already in the works for next year’s Saw You at the Pole.
“We want this to be something that happens every year,” he said. “You never know whose life might be changed just through one song or message or prayer.”