In an effort to challenge and pray for thousands of students across the nation, Fields of Faith will return on Oct. 10 to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ using sports fields all over the country.
“An athletic field provides a neutral rally point where a community can come together,” the outreach’s website says. And Fields of Faith, sponsored by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA), is set to use that rallying point to hear from, encourage and inspire community members with the Gospel.
“The central focus,” according to CBN News, “is to encourage students to challenge their peers to pray, read their Bible and commit their lives to Christ.”
Nearly 200,000 students, coaches, parents and peers are anticipated for this year’s outreach, which marks the 15th anniversary of the Fields of Faith kickoff. And Jeff Martin, the Oklahoma FCA director who first fueled the movement in 2004, sees the event as both a bridge between generations and a transparent platform for youngsters.
“If you just give students the mic, and that’s what we started doing … they thought it wouldn’t work, and what we saw was the opposite, that God uses the untrained ordinary and that these students listen to each other and the impact is not only that these students with their faith, they’re leading, but it’s reaching their peers,” he told CBN News. “And then the other thing is that it’s uniting the churches and communities. And if there’s one place left, unfortunately, in community, one place left that unites people of all creeds, colors, backgrounds, races, anything like that, it’s at athletic fields.”
FCA says that 198,000 people came together for the 2017 Fields of Faith outreach, with 521 different athletic fields hosting the communities and more than 6,000 people making first-time faith commitments to Christ.
As Fields of Faith notes, the outreach began with Martin finding inspiration from the Bible:
In 2002, Martin prayed about what to do with his heartfelt frustration regarding the temptations and spiritual battles facing our more “spectator generation” youth. God led him to 2 Chronicles 34 for the answer. King Josiah, an influential teenager, gathered his people and challenged them to read God’s Word. As a result, they changed their culture.