Just more than two years ago, Mineral Baptist Church member Jeremy Debaets was asked by church leadership to mix his two passions – archery and his faith – and turn them into a ministry.
Two years later, that vision has turned into a reality. This past Saturday, nearly 300 people poured into the MBC community center for the church’s first Sportsmen of God event, which resembled the combination of a hunting club and a youth group.
“It was a great event,” Debaets said. “Everyone seemed to have a great time. It’s exciting results!”
The event’s aim was to show an appreciation for the fundamental tenets of hunting, such as preservation, respect and camaraderie, and demonstrate how they are analogous to the teachings of Christ. To pull off the massive presentation, Debaets generated sponsorships from not just dozens of local businesses, but national hunting retailers such as Green Top and Parker Bows.
In total, 200 door prizes were given away, nine high-quality items such as bows and muzzleloaders were auctioned off and countless buzz was generated about what’s really happening at MBC.
And what’s happening, thanks in large part to the passion and dedication of Debaets, is a revolution.
While Saturday marked the first time the church has hosted a Sportsmen of God event, the function really served as the crowning achievement of a much longer process that has been years in the making.
To read the entire story, see the July 24 edition of The Central Virginian.