Large crowd attends Fields of Faith event

Thursday, October 12, 2017
A large crowd filled the stands at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium for the FCA Fields of Faith event Wednesday night.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

SIKESTON -- Student athletes and others took to Sikeston Public Schools Stadium to talk about their faith and were joined by an estimated 1,500 from the surrounding area Wednesday night.

Fields of Faith, which started nationally in 2004, is a national movement sponsored by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes that is a non-denominational, student-led prayer event that brings people together to read scripture and share their testimonies about what led them to Christ.

Wednesday marked the third time the event has been held in Sikeston and the second-straight year the event was held in the fall. Sikeston also held a Fields of Faith event in the spring. Last year weather forced the event indoors at the Sikeston Field House but Wednesday the event was held outdoors where uplifting music by Brothers Walker and Doug Johnson filled the air.

Doug Johnson and Brothers Walker perform during the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

"A few years ago Jennifer Hodgkiss and Dana Self had a dream to have this event, and it was neat to finally have this event on the field this year, seeing kids and leaders respond to the field in prayer and response to the Gospel message," said Three Rivers FCA Area Representative Josh Mills.

Kenny King, pastor at Smith Chapel United Methodist Church, challenged students to "be the change that we need."

"Our love of Jesus should be so strong we break down the walls that are dividing us," King said. "Let your faith in Jesus Christ be your identity."

Doug Johnson and Brothers Walker perform during the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

Andrea Kashyap, an English teacher and track coach at Sikeston High School

told of her high school years where she began partying to get attention. Then it was in her senior year where she began "hearing about the real Jesus."

"The real Jesus died for our sins so we didn't have to," she said.

Three Rivers FCA Area Representative Josh Mills speaks to the crowd at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

Jeffrey Thornbrough, a junior at Sikeston High School who plays soccer and baseball,

said even though he was raised to be Christian by Christian parents he didn't fully understand what that meant until he was in high school. Then his friends started to help him live the Christian life.

His message was to be a Christian today because "tomorrow isn't promised."

Blair Gordon reads a scripture at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

Ean Buffington, a senior at Jackson High School who runs cross country and competes in track and field, told the crowd of his identifying himself as a runner until he was injured.

"When you put identity into things of this world they can and will be taken away," Buffington said, as his injury led him to putting God first in his life.

The Fields of Faith event in Sikeston was one of many held throughout the nation.

Jeffery Thornbrough, a junior at Sikeston High School, gives his testimony at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

"I would personally like to thank the Sikeston High School administration and janitor crew who made it all possible, as well as many unsung heroes that spent countless hours on planning the event and pouring over it in prayer," said Mills, who was very happy with the event.

"Our worship team talked about the energy and atmosphere with the crowd and how great it is to see our community come together for an event like the Fields of Faith," Mills said.

For more information on Fields of Faith and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, visit MissouriFCA.org.

Ean Buffington, a senior at Jackson High School, gives his testimony at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat
Nate Self, a senior at Sikeston High School, introduces speaker Andrea Kashyap, at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat
Andrea Kashyap, an English teacher and track coach at Sikeston High School, gives her testimony at the Fields of Faith event Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat
Kenny King, pastor of Smith Chapel United Methodist Church in Sikeston, speaks at the Fields of Faith event held Wednesday night at Sikeston Public Schools Stadium.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat
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