SOUL to help minister kids every other Thursday

Seniors+Lois+LeFors%2C+Paige+Eaton+and+Maddie+Bowman+volunteer+with+SOUL%2C+a+Christian+organization%2C+to+minister+to+children+after+school.+

Photo by Racheal Sizemore

Seniors Lois LeFors, Paige Eaton and Maddie Bowman volunteer with SOUL, a Christian organization, to minister to children after school.

Story by Lois LeFors, news editor

There is nothing more inexplicably pure than the genuine smile of a child. Whole faces lighting up, eyes squinting and heads thrown back. Nothing touches the human heart quite like that kind of innocent and untainted joy. And nothing is more rewarding than being able to put that smile on a child’s face.

Serving Others With Unconditional Love (SOUL), a Christian organization on campus, has recently been given the opportunity to help out with one of Church On The Rock’s outreach children’s ministry called Sidewalk Sunday School every other Thursday after school.

“Sidewalk Sunday School is a volunteer activity where we go to different low-income apartment complexes and we call kids out with a big microphone and we read them stories, do worship music, teach them a little lesson, and have games and candy.” senior Paige Eaton said. “We also sometimes give them bags full of school supplies or things that they might need.”

While Church On The Rock is in charge of running the whole ministry, SOUL is simply there to serve and help out with whatever they can.

“We show up and we basically just set the atmosphere for the little ones,” Eaton said. “We get them involved and we participate in the activities and get them excited.”

Members of SOUL hope to encourage and love on the children and their families involved in the outreach as well as just offer them a safe place where they can enjoy themselves and be kids.

Volunteering with Sidewalk Sunday School helps us realize what we have and how fortunate we are. If these little kids believe and they’re not in the best situation, then why shouldn’t we?”

— Maddie Bowman

“If they had a bad day, us being able to go out there and have fun gives them something to do to get their minds off of any troubles at home, or any troubles they’re going through,” Eaton said. “It gives them something to look forward to every week.”

SOUL strives to share the love of God with these communities through this local outreach opportunity.

“If they’re not told about Jesus at home or they’re not brought to church to learn about God, we can bring it to them,” Eaton said. “It kind of just opens the door for a moral standard and sets the bar high for them.”

SOUL looks forward to being able to continue to reach out to different communities and share the love of Jesus with people. They also see it is an opportunity for personal spiritual growth as well.

“I think that this kind of thing is really important when you’re talking about spreading God’s word to kids, especially underprivileged kids. Their parents may not care enough to take them to church, they may not believe themselves or they may be working and can’t take them to church,” Bowman said. “Volunteering with Sidewalk Sunday School helps us realize what we have and how fortunate we are. If these little kids believe and they’re not in the best situation, then why shouldn’t we?”