Huntington community stands together in worship, praise to help people on the road to recovery

Community members in substance use recovery praise, worship and unite through music Mondays at Norway Avenue Church of Christ. Every week features a different genre of music, such as Christian rap, rock and blues, performed by local and famous musicians, alongside a message on how to walk with Jesus on the road to recovery.

With 14 months of sobriety under her belt, Cammie Carr, newcomer to The Movement, said she enjoys the music. 

“The singing and praise lifts your spirit up, and you can really feel him (Jesus) in the room and it’s unexplainable,” Carr said. “And after being baptized today, I feel free and am no longer bound by my sins and mistakes I have made.” 

Rocky Meadows, founder and pastor of The Movement, said through music a connection is deepened between attendees and Jesus in their worship.

“Music and praise opens up an atmosphere that the heavens open up, and God seems to be more prevalent in his presence,” Meadows said. “We open our hearts and access God in a way that we wouldn’t otherwise, and there’s something about when we come together that has power in it.”

Meadows said he hopes people walk away every Monday night changed with the information to help them through their walk in recovery.

“We are solution oriented and recovery focused,” Meadows said. “Everybody that comes here will be clean, sober for the night and can live as productive members of society. And we want to see this community changed by helping people through the process of recovery so they are the solution and not the problem.”

Shaun Wharff, an attendee, said The Movement has given him strength and helped him in his lowest moments after losing his son. 

“The Movement is my charger, my power source, to help me fight the good fight through recovery,” Wharff said. “I’ve been so lost in my life and disconnected from the world, and this gives me the hope and strength I need. This program opens my heart and eyes to so many great things and touches me in ways I thought were impossible with religion and speaks in volumes.”

Butch Berlin, former Chief of Police, said The Movement has changed him while he has worked there, and he is used to more conservative churches. 

“When I came here the hats and tattoos threw me off because we were at a church, but then I looked beyond that and realized they were the nicest bunch of people,” Berlin said. 

The Movement will be at Riverfront Park at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 24, where baptisms will be in the Ohio River along with one hour of worship.

Lillie Bodie can be contacted at [email protected].

Lillie Bodie
Pastor Jeff Garnett prays with attendees during The Movement at Norway Avenue Church of Christ Sept. 10.