While many who serve in summer ministries do so in one place, the Proclaim Ministry Teams enjoy serving others in a variety of ministries across the country! From assisting with vacation Bible school to assembling Bibles for distribution on the mission field, these teams have sought out ways to be a blessing to others.
Wanting to use his musical talents to glorify God, Yesung Kim (Jr., South Korea) tried out for Proclaim during his freshman year. Now, he and his team have been traversing the western U.S., where they have blessed others in various ministries while representing the Pensacola Christian College student body.
While their program offers music, a short message, and testimonies about how PCC is training up leaders to influence their world for Christ, Proclaim team members also lend helping hands to their hosts. “Often times the pastor would give us the full hour [of the service]; then we would have the opportunity to sing, share testimonies, and hear preaching from our leader,” Yesung explained. “The music is the main ‘key’ that lets us into churches. Our actual ministry, in my opinion, is before and after singing; as we talk to people, as we listen to individuals’ stories, as we stay in host homes. We try our best to leave a healthy testimony both as Christians and for the College.”
Having admired Proclaim during their visits to his church, Peyton Talley (So., FL) knew he wanted to join Proclaim if he ever attended PCC. Now, he and his team have been finding ways to bless other ministries across New England and the Northeast. “We have done plenty of different things while at a ministry,” he said. “While sometimes it is just the main program and socializing afterwards, we have been able to do service projects for churches. We have gone canvassing, cleaned buses, dumped mulch, and done plenty of other things as well.”
“One of my favorite ministry moments during the summer was when we were able to have a mini service outside the home of a cancer patient who wasn’t able to be at church,” Peyton continued. “We sang songs, and Mr. Pledger gave a short devotional. It was a really emotional and inspiring time.”
David Pledger, the PCC representative who leads Peyton’s team, has been encouraged by the spirit of service that those on his team have embraced throughout the summer. “There was a youth conference where we were, and instead of sitting back and having fun, the guys gladly jumped in to help them run their games,” he said. “They stood out in the hot sun for a few hours and really made connections with the teens as they led the games.”
“None of the guys on our team are [studying] music or ministry majors,” Pledger continued. “This really showcases the fact that at PCC, we are not interested in making you good at only one thing—we want to empower people in many ways to serve the Lord.”
Abby Johnson (Sr., IL), a nursing student who wanted to lend her musical talents to a group, has thoroughly enjoyed her team’s stops at youth rallies and summer camps; but her favorite part has been seeing others come to know Christ. “We get to meet and fellowship with pastors and their families. Our goal is to be a blessing to each ministry and to encourage them, but without fail we are the ones being blessed, whether it be with gift bags, kind words, amazing hosts we spend time with, or countless other things,” said Abby. “We got to be a part of one youth rally in New Castle, Indiana, and helped knock on doors inviting teens to come each night. Seeing teens get saved there and at the camps we’ve been at is such an honor!”
Because his father and sister have also served on Proclaim, Bennett Roberts (So., FL) understood how the teams traveled and served others across the country. His team has made stops across the central U.S., including Chattanooga and Nashville, TN; Cleveland and Cedar Point, OH; and Indianapolis, IN. While most stops include presenting a special service at churches, his team has also promoted PCC at camps, where they have also taken time to help camp staff set up or clean areas for the campers.
“It has been so fun getting to know the rest of my team; I hadn’t met any of them before we were put together, and even though we each have very different personalities, we find a common goal in ministering to other people. Everyone has been amazing,” said Bennett. “[Proclaim] is a great way to influence lives and see the country, as well as make connections to ministries across the country while traveling with fellow students.”
Of course, traveling in close quarters for long hours can become difficult, but each team has found ways to use those moments as opportunities for personal growth. “Something I noticed traveling as a student—that has been reaffirmed while traveling as a leader—is that being a part of a Proclaim team will undoubtedly make some of your own faults apparent to you,” said Brendan Stephens, a PCC representative who leads a Central U.S. team. “God uses this ministry as a way to expose to each participating individual areas in which they can clearly grow. My prayer is that the entirety of our team will walk forward after the summer with the continued motivation to spiritually improve in all aspects of life in which God is leading them.”
Looking back over the weeks that have passed so far, Yesung shares a feeling that many on Proclaim share: no regrets. “The experience of traveling with Proclaim this summer—I wouldn’t trade for anything,” he said. “It is so amazing to see God work through me, a sinner, to give hope and encouragement to other people.”