not as planned

In youth ministry, and ministry in general, it can be very easy to feel like the work you have just done was ineffective. In my case, that work is running 71Five Campus in Gold Hill. About a month ago, I invited a friend as a guest speaker to come and share his story with the youth. Though he did a great job, it’s like the kids had no interest in what he was saying and seemed it was a big waste of time. Things did not go as I had planned that night. I also thought for sure the new girl who was there for her very first time would not want to come back (ever) again. Well, I’m glad I was wrong this time! Right after club ended that night, Miley came up to me and asked, “Is there anything I have to do to be apart of club?” To which I joyfully responded, “Nope, you’re already a part of it! All you have to do is show up”
 
When reading Romans 12:11 I was reminded to never give up and not to lose hope! It says, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord”! Thank you for providing the opportunities at 71Five for kids to see the hope found in Jesus.
 
DANIEL PETERSON,  71Five Campus Coordinator – Gold Hill  
(541) 761-7589 | daniel@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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Oh, That’s Jesus Music…

In 71Five VoTech, being open and straight forward about Jesus or religious content can be challenging and elusive as we focus on teaching vocational skills with a set curriculum. So, many times we’re looking for creative situations to share Jesus. One day in class I was working with a student and she wanted to listen to music. I tuned into a local Christian radio station to which she said, “Oh, that’s Jesus music!” I immediately said a quick prayer thanking Him for opening a door and proceeded to have a conversation about Jesus. We don’t always get very far in conversations, but I’m reminded that I’m responsible for planting seeds and trusting the Lord that He will cause the growth.
 
Thank you for providing a training facility where skills can be given to better their future and relationships build trust leading to hope. And “Yes” we will still be playing that “Jesus Music.”
 
JEFF MORITZ, 71Five VoTech Coordinator – Grants Pass
(541) 450-7108 | jeffmoritz@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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small strides

A few weeks ago I asked Kevin who’s an outspoken atheist, why he didn’t even want to consider there might be a god. He soon opened up and told me he’d prayed to God once and God didn’t answer him. I asked him what he prayed about and he didn’t want to answer at first. After some further reflection, he decided I was safe and shared that he’d prayed for a certain girl to be his girlfriend but the girl ended up not liking him. It opened the conversation to the possibility that God sees a bigger picture than Kevin, and a “No” in this instance, might have been a good thing. Kevin still doesn’t believe in God, but we took a step in the right direction thanks to him trusting that I was a safe person. 
 
We see small strides like this all the time with the kids at Youth 71Five Ministries. It may not feel like life transforming moments, but over time, these kids keep taking baby step after baby step closer to Jesus. This happens through trusting relationships with caring volunteers and staff who constantly tell about God’s love for them. Over the course of time, we see kids come to know Jesus. Often, it’s at events like summer camps where kids first profess their faith in Jesus, but it’s the simple conversations and the trust built with leaders that gets kids to camp. Want to make a difference in kids lives by being a trusted adult who points kids to Jesus? There are many ways to get involved. Please, call us at (541) 779-3275 or visit www.71Five.org and make an eternal difference in kid’s lives.
 
TIM HARDY,  71Five Campus Ministry Director – North Medford 
(541) 840-0960 | tim@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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learning to trust

I’d like to share with you a letter I received from one of the youth that was lodged at the Juvenile Detention Center.
 
Dear Youth 71Five Ministries,
 
I’d just like to write this to let you all know that I’m very grateful and appreciative of you guys for coming in and talking to us about God. It’s done a lot to strengthen my belief in God and to learn to trust that there is a method to the madness that life is sometimes. I’d also like to thank you guys for the food, all of the food that you’ve brought in for us, it’s very kind and generous of you guys to do that for us. Again, I thank you guys with all of my heart for all you’ve shared with me these last six months. I won’t forget it!
 
-Sincerely, Mahlon
 
When he says “You Guys” he means YOU! Thank you for your partnership in this ministry, sharing true hope with kids in difficult places…and for providing all of the food.
 
BEAU JESKA,  71Five Justice Ministry Director  
(541) 601-9631 | beau@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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Recess!

I recently bussed 4 kids from their school to one of our elementary clubs. On the ride over I asked, “How’s School?” and received the typical “Good” and “Fine” answers. Digging deeper, I asked what their favorite part of school was. There was a silence, and then Jayden said “Recess!” The others laughed and agreed, all but Sammy, the smallest of the bunch. She responded with “Not me, I hate recess!” She shared how she has no friends and sits all by herself at recess and lunch time. Then, with a jump in her seat, she said “But this is my favorite part. Club! Because I get to play and have snacks!” It was a bittersweet moment as we arrived at her favorite place, Club! 71Five Club isn’t just a place “to go”… it’s a place where many young people find refuge, acceptance, and loving adults who genuinely desire to come alongside them and do life together, even if it’s just playing the game “telephone”, like we did that day!
 
You provide youth clubs, activities, camps, and more throughout the year where kids can come as they are and build trusting relationships that lead to hope. Thank you!!
 
DARLENE HARPER,  71Five Mentors Coordinator  
(805) 202-9125 | darlene@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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EXIT to ENTER

I joined the 71Five VoTech staff 3 months ago as a case manager. I knew God had led me here and I was excited to see what He would do. I have met so many wonderful young people. Many of these students are a part of the Juvenile System, where they are lodged for 6 months at a time. One of these young men, Anthony, was exiting 71Five VoTech because he had served his time at Juvie and was ready to go home. During the EXIT survey I asked Anthony if he had ever asked Jesus into his heart. He replied, “No.” I said that he could have the hope of Jesus today if he wanted to pray with me. With eyes wide and sincere he answered, ”I do want to do that.” So, in my simple office, 15 feet from the shop where Anthony had spent time welding, working on cars, and hearing about Jesus, Anthony asked Jesus into his heart. I gave him a Bible in which he proudly signed his name and the date he asked Jesus into his life. Anthony was able to EXIT from his past life of sin and ENTER his new life of freedom and hope.
 
As we work together training young people with skills that can make a positive difference in their future, thank you for showing them the Hope of Jesus.
 
TERESA HUTLEY,  71Five VoTech Case Manager – Medford 
(541) 282-4689 | teresahutley@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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smile

As a youth leader, it is not uncommon for me to receive comments during the Bible lesson like, “How much longer?”, “Why do we have to do this?”, or “This is so boring.” One evening I was teaching through the Bible lesson and there were several kids making comments about how they didn’t want to sit through the teaching. As the kids were shouting out their comments, Lawrence, one of the middle schoolers, exclaimed “I just want to learn about Jesus!” If those words don’t make a youth pastor smile, I don’t think anything will. Lawrence was baptized last summer, and it is amazing to see him grow in his relationship with Jesus.
 
This is why we do what we do. This is why your ministry matters. So kids can learn about Jesus.
 
PETER KUHL,  71Five Campus – Eagle Point Coordinator  
(541) 630-0648 | peter@71Five.org

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unshakable confidence

A recent casual conversation at 71Five City, quickly turned into a great discussion on how the Gospel gives us an unshakable confidence; centered in a person’s identity in Christ. The Gospel removes the temptation of looking at your performance as your self-worth or your identity. The gospel reveals the unnecessary soul crushing burden that our society puts on people to create self-confidence based on looks or profession. Mary excitedly said, “We need to talk more about this during our Club discussions!” Mary was very interested in discussing how the Gospel gives us great personal freedom and confidence not to be dependent on social media ‘likes’ or how awesome you are, or how “hot” you are. We can have unshakable confidence that the Gospel is the A to Z not just the ABC’s of Christianity. It addresses every issue of the heart and mind, even in these perplexing times.
 
You help reach kids like Mary with this life-changing Gospel! These changes are great. They are deep. They are forever changes on how young people look at themselves in the mirror… Because of your life-giving support. Thank you for all you do!
 
SHANE SKIRVIN,  71Five City – Liberty Park Coordinator  
(541) 646-1475 | shane@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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Unspoken Appreciation

As I stood in the parking lot after club, I overheard one of the leaders mention he was going mudding with his truck. This talk about driving up to the top of a mountain, turned into a plan. We invited a couple of youth who were excited about going and they invited a couple of their friends as well. What began as a mudding adventure, now entailed a bon fire, roasting hot dogs, and making s’mores. As we headed up the mountain, none of us really knew what to expect until we arrived at the peak. As we overlooked the city of Grants Pass it was covered with a majestic blanket of fog; all of us were in awe of its beauty. The day turned to night as quickly as the bon fire engulfed into flames. We gathered around eating, laughing, and enjoying each other’s company. Throughout the night, there was an unspoken appreciation we all felt about being there and being with one another. Before long, the fog cleared away and the city lights could be seen for miles! The full moon rose and not a single cloud covered the stars. God’s creation surrounded us and completely took our breath away.
 
Moments like these can be once in a lifetime. At 71Five, conversations turn into adventures that build relationships that lead to hope.
 
FARRAH GUTHRIE,  71Five City Coordinator – Grants Pass
(541) 840-6544 | farrah@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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50 year impact

My mom and her siblings began attending Campus Life (now called 71Five Campus) in the 1970’s. This was where my parents met and came to know more about Jesus. I started attending Campus Life in High School, and my husband came to know Jesus on a Mexico mission trip organized through Campus Life. Now my daughter is a 71Five Campus regular, along with her friends. For 50 years 71Five has had a positive impact on pretty much everyone I’m close to; spanning 3 generations. I am now blessed to continue this legacy as the 71Five Parents Coordinator, impacting the lives of pregnant and parenting teens.
 
If you have prayed, cared, shared, provided, or volunteered for 71Five… Thank you! Your investment impacts many generations!
 
TERESA TONINI,  71Five Parents Coordinator  
(541) 941-1143 | teresa@71Five.org
 
“Lord God, you are my hope. I have trusted you since I was young.” Psalm 71:5 ICB

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