God's New Life to host fundraiser

Tuesday, August 13, 2013
God's New Life has been helping the people of Poinsett County and surrounding areas overcome troublesome times since 2006. (Photo provided)

God's New Life in Marked Tree is reaching out to the community to help fund their efforts in obtaining a new roof for their building. The center has raised half of the total estimated expenses for the new roof. The United Methodist Women of the First United Methodist Church in Marked Tree are sponsoring a Boston Butt fundraiser to help God's New Life reach their total goal of $140,000 to replace 26,000 square feet of roof.

The ministry has existed in Marked Tree for seven years as a non-profit non-denominational organization. The center is based on discipleship and does not operate as a rehab. They cater to people of all backgrounds and walks of life including people with drug, alcohol and emotional problematic histories.

"We minister the Gospel of Jesus Christ to people who's life has somehow gotten off track," said Gary Still, director of the center.

Still said the center was donated seven years ago to Mission Teens, Inc. Mission Teens began in 1969 in New Jersey by Reverend James D. Bracken. Bracken recognized the issue of a troubled youth, and started the center with the hopes of giving teens an opportunity to gain their own hope through Jesus Christ. The center eventually blossomed out with centers all over the nation.

According to the director, the residents of Poinsett County were very involved in sending their loved ones or friends to the center to receive help. This evidence of need encouraged Mission Teens, Inc., to embark on a journey to help the residents better by providing an on-site location. Since the donation of the building in Marked Tree, Still said they have seen a few hundred people enter the program and leave with a new insight on life.

The program lasts 8 to 10 months, with the residents of the center going through four phases of learning. God's New Life currently has 30 residents. Still added that the program is very structured, with residents doing all of the work. The center does not have a hired-staff to cook or clean, with the residents doing their own chores around the building.

"We are very self-sufficient," Still said. "Everybody has something to do here."

God's New Life has a 7-year history of helping people of the community find a beacon of hope. With the help of the United Methodist Women, they are now asking for the community's help. Still said the center has been placing "band-aids" on the roof until now. With their endeavors to raise money well underway, they hope hope to reach another milestone with the Boston Butt Fundraiser.

It will be held at the First United Methodist Church from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 16. They will have whole Boston butts, pork or chicken platters, and pork sandwich plates for sale. Persons wanting more information about the fundraiser or the center may contact God's New Life at (870) 358-4851.

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