First 'Reach Waco' To Attract 1,000 Local Youth

June 6, 2001

Approximately 1,000 young people from the Waco area will gather on the Baylor University campus to participate in Reach Waco, a city-wide youth missions and evangelistic rally, June 19-21. The multi-ethnic, multi-denominational event is open to seventh- through 12th-graders and is sponsored by Baylor's youth programs.

"Reach Waco is an attempt to get youth groups from all over the city together to praise the Lord and to share a concern for young people who are struggling with life and life's addictions," said Dr. Don Mattingly, coordinator of youth programs at Baylor. "We have more than 30 churches from the Waco area that have committed to be part of missions projects and more than double that number that will come to rallies at Waco Hall at night."

Reach Waco actually will kick off at 8:30 p.m. Saturday, June 17, with a Prayer Walk that will feature singing, prayer and the opportunity for young people from different local churches to interact with each other. From 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. June 19 to 21, participants can work on more than 30 different types of service projects that are available throughout the city.

"There will be opportunities for teenagers to work with non-profit organizations such as Habitat for Humanity and Caritas, to help out in a Christian sports camp at Columbus Avenue Baptist Church and to participate in King's Clubs or backyard Bible clubs with Mission Waco," Mattingly said.

Three evening worship rallies also have been planned for Tuesday through Thursday. These services, which will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in Waco Hall, will be led by Voddie Baucham Jr., a highly-popular and frequent speaker at church revivals and youth camps throughout the U.S. Baucham currently serves as associate teaching pastor at Sagemont Church in Houston and is completing his doctorate at Southeastern Seminary in North Carolina. He lives in England where he is a visiting doctoral student at Oxford University.

The Billy Foote band from Evergreen Baptist Church in Colorado will provide special music during the rallies, and the Skitiots from Saddleback Valley Community Church in Lake Forest, Calif., will perform dramatic presentations about teenagers and their struggles to follow Christ.

Reach Waco takes place during the second session of Baylor You, week-long Christian youth camps in which participants stay on the Baylor campus and participate in daily Bible study, missions and recreation. More than 500 seventh- to 12th-graders are expected to attend this year's three Baylor You sessions.

There is no charge to attend Reach Waco events. For more information about Reach Waco or Baylor You, contact Mattingly at (254) 710-3827.

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