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Christian Group Works During the Holidays

Susan Harmon
Staff Writer           

   A University of Arkansas at Monticello’s religious group plans to extend its compassion through the holiday season.

   Christians in Action, affiliated with the local Church of Christ, serves as one of several Christian organizations on the UAM campus. According to CIA Director and Campus Minister Brian Jones, CIA tries to glorify God and represent Jesus Christ as best they can by living Christ-like lives.

   “We do this primarily by teaching people the Gospel of Christ, that is, how Jesus died on the cross for our sins, was buried and rose again, all according to the scriptures,” Jones said.

   A medicine drive to benefit the African Christian Hospitals and International Health Care Foundation conducted recently resulted in CIA collecting over-the-counter medicines such as bandages, ointment and pain relievers then shipping the supplies to Ghana and Nigeria for use by health care workers to aid individuals in remote clinics.

   One important principle to CIA remains their attempt to not only help and serve people's physical needs, but most importantly by reaching out and sharing God's word to help meet their spiritual needs.

   “Our group also likes to help on campus by participating in other groups' projects such as the UAM Ambassadors' pumpkin decorating contest and Valentine's gift boxes or other groups that do special fundraisers to help those less fortunate such as the victims of Hurricane Katrina,” Jones said.

   Other activities CIA participate in includes helping with the church's "Love Cupboard," a local food pantry that donates to families in need of food, working at the Southern Christian Home in Morrilton and conducting fund-raisers to buy toys, games and crafts for kids at Arkansas Children's Hospital to help brighten the days of children who are being treated at the hospital.

   “CIA was a refuge for me when I was a student.  It was a place to meet other students of the same faith who were struggling with the same temptations college students now endure.  It is a place to learn and study God’s word with fellow Christians. CIA is a great mission and a necessity on the UAM campus," said Jason Meier, deacon and youth minister of the Church of Christ.

   He continued, “I am so glad that UAM encourages church organizations to be a part of campus life.  Whichever Christian organization students choose to be a part of, it is a vital part of your college career.  I would encourage all students to take an active part with their organization.”

   CIA presently plans to conduct a fund-raiser in order to build a new CIA meeting hall on campus.

   “The fund-raiser will help build a bigger facility which will be located near the UAM Field House and Weevil Pond,” co-sponsor Tracie Jones said.

   CIA plans to show Christ-like behavior this Christmas season by sponsoring a child through the Department of Human Services or a children’s home for Christmas. The Church of Christ also donates toys and bikes for children suspected to be classified as low-income.

   The group holds weekly devotionals Wednesday nights at 7 p.m. in Jeter Hall.  During each month there are typically nights they meet earlier to eat. Anyone interested in joining the group may attend.


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ŠThe Voice 2007
Revised 09/17/2007 08:12:03 PM —