Archive for Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tonganoxie High student-athletes form FCA chapter

December 26, 2007

The Fellowship of Christian Athletes has a new student-led organization at Tonganoxie High School.

FCA, which was founded in 1954, focuses on serving local communities by equipping, empowering and encouraging people to make a difference for Christ. The THS FCA currently has roughly 40 students involved and two faculty sponsors, THS principal Jamie Carlisle and THS teacher Jared Jackson. Meetings for the FCA are weekly at 7:20 a.m. Thursday in the high school auditorium.

"We have been meeting for a little over a month now and we have had really fun meetings," said Amanda Albert, a THS senior and FCA leadership member.

The meetings begin with an opening prayer and singing.

"At the meetings we have a devotional, which is where we have a speaker talk to us," Albert said. "Sometimes it's someone from a local church or last week Ashlee Lohman (a fellow member and THS student) spoke to us."

Meetings end with a game or activity, which is followed by a closing prayer.

The student-led organization also is sponsoring events that are open to all THS students, which are called FCA Fun Nights. The first was Nov. 20 and more are planned for the future. There were 65 students who attended the event, where they played dodge ball and Hefley ball.

Hefley ball, which was invented by a Pittsburg State professor, is now becoming popular throughout the nation.

"It's a weird version of volleyball, but there is no net," Carlisle explained. Hefley Ball can be played with an unlimited number of players. In addition, Hefley ball is different from volleyball in that, instead of serving the ball behind the back line, the ball can be served from anywhere on the court.

Albert also noted that her church youth minister, Scott Courtney, was a guest speaker and that he showed a video.

"The whole night was a lot of fun for everyone," Albert said.

The Tonganoxie FCA already has held two events. In addition to Night of Praise and Worship, in which Kansas University football standout James McClinton, a taco dinner and gift exchange was held. Both events were at the high school.

At the Night of Praise and Worship, praise band Vessel performed as part of the festivities.

Even though the student-led group just recently was established, plans already are in the works to help the community. Twelve students have stepped forward to create a leadership group designed to brainstorm about events that would help the community.

"We are going to be helping out at the Good Shepherd (Thrift Store and Food Pantry in Tonganoxie) and we are adopting a family this year," said Carlisle.

- Ebbert is a Tonganoxie High School senior who is working as an intern this school year at The Mirror.

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