By Rebekah Ray
Formatted as a collaborative Disciple Now event, “Collide Weekend” was designed to bring students together from all over Brandon for worship, instruction, and missions. John Nugent, minister of youth and recreation for Brandon Baptist Church, said “we called it ‘Collide’ because we talked about the results of your life colliding with Jesus,” “What would collision look like?”
Nugent said the idea for the cooperative effort began with First Baptist Church Brandon, Brandon Baptist Church, Meadow Grove Baptist Church and Brandon First United Methodist Church, and grew to the point of eight churches’ involvement in the weekend. Their heartbeat: to see students saved and lives changed not only during the event’s occurrence, but also as a result of what they hoped would follow.
An event of this scale sent the leaders looking for help. Since a key component of the weekend was involving students in missions projects. The youth ministers turned to the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board and the Margaret Lackey State Missions Offering.
Your gifts enabled over 450 teenagers to work together to show Christ to their city. Perhaps the most immediately visible show of unity and service from the weekend occurred as groups from Collide went out into neighborhoods around Brandon and the greater Jackson area to be actively involved in missions. Teenagers served by cleaning yards, hosting a block party in downtown Jackson, and visiting with residents of area nursing homes. Many resources essential to their efforts were supplied by Margaret Lackey funds.
Feedback from people who witnessed or were served by the students’ missions efforts was incredibly positive, Nugent said. Even Josh Smith, lead singer for the band Ashes Remain that led worship for Collide Weekend, said the effect was remarkable.
“We've been doing this for a while now, traveling around the country singing in different settings like this,” Smith said. “I just have to tell you guys, this kind of thing doesn't happen everywhere else – churches coming together like this.”
Today, as you pray for the Margaret Lackey State Missions Offering, take a moment to give thanks for the witness of Collide Weekend. Take a moment, too, to realize that the gifts you give are enabling ministries like this to happen throughout Mississippi, and around the world.