The message is always the same: Jesus

The message is always the same: Jesus


Gretchen Madison, the Campus Life High School Director for YFC Holbrook, says one of the hardest things for her high schoolers to do is give up their cell phones during YFC club meetings. She remembers a time when one of her girls would excuse herself three or four times to use the restroom, only to be sneaking her phone with her. Despite some protests, Gretchen has been able to invite her to stay off her phone and engage with her leaders.

These days, that same girl is inviting her peers to come to YFC events, where she can be found praising God with her friends.

“Her whole outlook has changed,” Gretchen said.

Handing over a cell phone is one thing but handing over their lives to Jesus is something else entirely. The YFC leaders at Holbrook are diligently working to reach kids just like her to share the love and hope of Christ with them. They see the hardships the kids they serve are facing, especially over the last year.

Jared and Carrie Burgess are the co-directors for YFC Holbrook, and alongside Gretchen, work closely with kids in the Holbrook area. The student demographic is mostly Native Americans, with the rest of the population having Hispanic, Caucasian, Black, and Asian backgrounds.

“These teens are dealing with alcoholism, a lot of drug abuse, broken families, sexual abuse, and transgender issues,” Jared said. “YFC Holbrook provides them with a place to go, someone to talk to about their problems.”

Carrie says the pandemic has affected how they connect with the students, but the message is always the same: Jesus.

“We’ve had teens participate in the program and then return as young adult volunteers at YFC Holbrook...and tell us that they wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for the ministry,” she said. “They are an inspiration!”

YFC Holbrook is also prayerfully pursuing beginning a Parent Life ministry in the area, led by Gretchen, to resource and come alongside teen mothers and fathers.

“We always need prayers. And if people can volunteer their time, or provide food/snack donations, that would be so helpful,” Jared said.

Carrie added, “Our program runs completely on donations, and we need funding to make [our Parent Life ministry] a success.”

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