Pastor Carl McCLuney and the New Harvest Ministries recently saw a part of their Community Outreach Vision come to pass during the week of Wednesday, June 14 through Friday night, June 16, 2017 in their new facility at 308 Neely Ferry Road, Mauldin!
The Church event is called “Auxiliaries In Ministry” or “AIMS” and is focused on Youth from ages 5 through 18 years of age! This yearly jurisdictional event is held in different locations throughout South Carolina. This year, the event was held in the Upstate, right here in Mauldin!
This is a gathering that allows students to compete both scholastically and be enriched spiritually! The goal is to move beyond the State Level Competition to the National Level!
Leaders from each Church prepare their students both scholastically and spiritually for this annual event. The process of training not only prepares them for friendly competition; but on a much larger scale, the ultimate goal of being great citizens in all walks of life through early study preparation ; setting and obtaining goals and work ethics.
What an amazing process of learning through a Church structured program!
With the event rotating every year, New Harvest Ministries was chosen to host the 2017 AIMS Conference! Hosting brings with it the logistics for such a great event! Pastor Carl credits his members and staff for their success! These members and staff volunteered their time and efforts to ensure its success! Their serving included everything from hospitality, meal preparations, classroom setup, cleaning and even the cookout at Sunset Park!
This yearly Conference is a morning and evening event that brings approximately 200 youth competitors during the mornings for scholastic motivation. The evening services are open door spiritual services for everyone. The evening crowds are usually around 500!
The competitions vary from Math, Oratorical, Spelling, Talent and Drill and Dance Teams; College Prep, the importance of Salvation and much more!
Lunch was served daily in the new fellowship and kitchen facility! The new facility seats approximately 230 people; so it presented better options for the crowd to dine-in the facility or the local community of Mauldin/Simpsonville.
Afternoons were spent in break-out sessions where the students go deeper into panel discussions with releveant topics to understand better their concept of life in the world of 2017! Pastor McCLuney shared his amazement at the topics and information covered and the positive mindsets of these students in becoming a meaningful part of making a difference for Christ in todays world!
The evening services were designed for worship for all ages; yet geared specifically toward the students! Music and speakers bring relevant information and challenges for todays’ students; making it an enjoyable and eventful evening!
After 3 days of competition; the students are given a break for lunch on Friday and gather at Mauldin’s Sunset Park for a cookout and games and general relationship building time with others from across the state.
The culmination of the entire event was the “Awards Night” during the Friday evening service. State Leaders present the winners in each category! With winners and churches being recognized; the energy and cheers were exuberant to say the least!
Pastor Carl stated that it was a great success! He added his Youth Department was ready for the task and won several of the competitions. Pastors know that this event will serve as a foundation for great youth success and productive citizens.
The next step was the nationals! The National Competition was Friday, July 3 through July 8th in Charlotte, N.C. The winners from each state competition went on to compete on a national level! The Churches of God Of Christ have churches in all states and many countries around the World! So, the interaction on the state and national level for the students is incredible!
While the event was extremely successfully, one of the greatest challenges Pastor McCluney and his leadership team experienced was availability of hotels and restaurants in our Mauldin area. His desire to have everyone as close to the central church location became challenging and extended to the Greenville; Woodruff Road; and Simpsonville areas for proper accommodations. However, he is very hopeful that in the near future there will be accelerated growth to better manage the many diverse needs and desires of the growing Mauldin Community!
For more information www.newharvestministries.org.♦