In the coming weeks if you’re walking through town and you see a lot of teenagers sporting "I agree with Jeffy" T-shirts, don’t be afraid to ask them about it. That’s what the shirts are designed to do — to get people asking questions, to get people talking.
    The "I agree with Jeffy" campaign is the brainchild of area youth pastors in response to the many confusing messages today’s youth are bombarded with.
    America’s youth are inundated with all kinds of messages. They get them from the media, from the entertainment world and from their peers, explained John McIntyre, the youth pastor at Manna Church.             These messages are often confusing, leaving teens wondering exactly who it is they are supposed to be and what it is they are supposed to do. Even the messages they receive from religious organizations can get confusing. McIntyre, along with a number of youth pastors from area churches decided after much prayer that it was time to do something about that — so they started the "I agree with Jeffy" campaign.
    "We have been talking about doing something to send a strong signal to the younger generation that the church is not divided," said McIntyre. "We want them to see that there are so many things that are central to our faith."
    That idea has formed into a major youth event on Friday, May 2, on the campus of Fayetteville Technical Community College. Called “One Night. One City. One God,” the event is not a festival. It is also not the typical youth event with skits and drama. It is a night dedicated to worship and prayer — with the emphasis on prayer.
    {mosimage}McIntyre said that by putting forth the core central beliefs of the church the young people can see the common ground they have with other people.
    "We are letting these young people see they really are the silent majority," he said
    The Jeffy campaign is central to the event.
    "It’s really a grass roots type of movement in public schools," explained McIntyre.
    Students can wear the Jeffy shirts and then can recognize that there are other Christians around them who they were unaware of. The shirts can also start discussions and lead to questions from others.             McIntyre said those questions will give youth the opportunity to share their faith.
    "We’re not talking about shoving anything down someone’s throat," he said. "It’s simply the start of a discussion on belief."
    Getting to the heart of those central beliefs is a big part of the Friday night event. It is expected that more than 1,000 teens will turn out for the night of worship and prayer.
    "We (the youth pastors) were talking about what could happen if these teens could catch a glimpse of how many of them there are. They are not outnumbered. They get battered by the media and by others who don’t share their beliefs," he continued. "It’s easy for them to get discouraged in their faith. This event is designed to encourage them to take a stand — to gather strength in seeing how many they are."
    McIntyre explained that many of the youth groups in the core churches involved in organizing the event have been praying for quite a while for the event. Some have even been involved in a 21-day "Daniel Fast" to prepare their hearts and minds for the night. The Daniel Fast is based on the Biblical story of Daniel, a young Jewish man taken into captivity. He and three of his friends refused the king’s food, and instead asked to eat only that which was in keeping with their religious beliefs. Their request and their actions were in keeping with their commitment to God. The fast itself requires the eating of fruits and vegetables and the elimination of processed foods, sugars and meats from the diet. It also calls for dedicated prayer.
    Throughout the evening, youth groups will lead the attendees in praise and worship, and then groups will break off into small groups for directed prayer on issues surrounding teens, families and communities.
All area youth groups, and those not involved in youth groups or churches, are invited to attend. The event begins at 6 p.m. and is expected to end at 9 p.m. For more information, visit the Web site

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