Soldier Community Church Welcoming Youth, Experiencing Growth

Soldier Community ChurchSOLDIER, Pa. (EYT) — When Pastor Kevin Brooks and his wife Tina came to Jefferson County in 1984, the church in Soldier had a congregation of less than a dozen people and they were all over the age of 50.

Today, Soldier Community Church, located between Sykesville and Reynoldsville, boasts a membership of 175 people and is very active with its youth membership.

“It will be 33 years in June that we came here from Ohio and there were about 8 to 10 people in the church and they were all over 50,” Brooks said. “We knew we had to reach out to the young adults and that’s what we did,

“Now, our kids are in their 20s and 30s and a good number of our members are in that age range and they are bringing their children,” Brooks said.

Then in 1999, the decision was made to become a community church.

Soldier Community Church 2

“That seems to have made a big difference. We saw that need and we wanted to make it more about a person’s faith and belief in God and praising his name than about the differences among separate denominations,” Brooks said.

Brooks said the church will welcome a new youth leader in a few weeks at the Sunday, March 19 service.

“He will be in charge of youth events for teens from 13-17,” Brooks said. “We will have a get-acquainted session after the regular service. We’re very excited about being able to do more events for that age group.”

The growth of the church has led to services now being held in the multi-purpose building that is located next to the church where services were held.

The multi-purpose building has seen many changes and is undergoing more.

Currently, the stage is being remodeled.

Brooks’s son Chad, a church board member, is organizing those efforts. He recently held a chili cook-off which raised about $1,500.

Chad Brooks, right, awards the 2017 Chili Cook-Off trophy to Alyse Smith, center and Gavin Smith.

Chad Brooks, right, awards the 2017 Chili Cook-Off trophy to Alyse Smith, center and Gavin Smith.

Another fundraiser, a soup supper, will be held from 6-8 p.m., Saturday, April 22.

The money will help with the stage renovations.

The new stage is two feet high, making it better for parents to watch their kids in programs or musicals.

The new stage also has a storage area where tables, chairs, and decorations can be kept.

There are also classrooms for young children built in the building.

“The work that has been done in the multi-purpose building has all been done by members of our congregation,” Pastor Brooks said. “We’re very fortunate to have many talented people in our church and we’re excited about the direction we’re taking.”

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