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New Young Life leaders announced

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Young Life’s ministry is growing as they welcomed five new student leaders to their multiple outreach teams across the county.

The students met Sunday to celebrate the leadership appointments of Sadie Helmick and Ben O’Dell to the Marshall team, Emily Lewis to the Huntington High team, Emily Hershberger to the Huntington East Middle team and Bryan McGlone to the Huntington Middle team.

“I’m so excited. My whole family has gone to school here and I’m just excited to make an impact on this campus for Christ,” O’Dell, a freshman majoring in English education, said.

New leaders brought friends and parents with them to celebrate the night with cupcakes and confetti. As each new leader was announced, the area director, Brad Bucklad, and staff member, Alli Childers, showered each student with confetti from confetti cannons.

While Sunday was a party for new leaders, it is a long process to become a certified Young Life leader.

The first part of the process is an application, followed by an interview process. Bucklad said applicants will not receive an interview unless they are personally known by the staff at Young Life beforehand. This is to ensure the new leaders will be assigned to the schools and areas most beneficial to all and to ensure the call to ministry is true.

“We want to know that they have a growing healthy relationship with Christ,” Bucklad said. “A willingness to go into places that are hard, to befriend kids that maybe don’t have a lot of friends, or are pretty lost and hurting, knowing that eventually they might be able to share the gospel with them.”

After going through the interview process, it then becomes a question of placement. Young Life has outreach programs at both Cabell Midland and Huntington High School, as well as multiple middle schools in the city of Huntington and at Marshall University.

“We didn’t place a leader at Cabell Midland because we have five leaders [there] and it’s a pretty well rounded team,” Bucklad said. “There were other places we thought could use some help. Marshall University has 13,350 students; we could have 20 leaders at Marshall and it’s not enough.”

The leaders on campus are responsible for organizing the weekly Young Life large and small group meetings, social outings and tailgates.

Young Life’s weekly meetings are Tuesdays at 9 p.m. in Harris Hall 134.

Karenann Flouhouse can be contacted [email protected]

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