Southern California division celebrates

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Division holds third annual celebration at Crestmont.

by Jennifer Perine –

Animal Tracks handlers show a yellow python from Borneo to children attending the SoCal Celebration.

Beautiful Pacific Ocean views were the backdrop for the third annual SoCal Celebration, which took place at Crestmont on April 21. Once again hundreds of Salvationists and friends gathered to celebrate our kinship in Christ through a variety of activities.

As in the past the many activities included soccer and basketball tournaments, Bible Bowl, a mini-SAY rally, a Main Stage providing contemporary worship music, a children’s fun zone, and a World Services ingathering meeting.

There was a strong focus on World Services this year as vendors selling their food and wares at various booths raised money to meet their World Services goals. The SAY rally also focused on the world with a variety of activities for the children aimed at teaching them more about our world. During this time Sunbeam, Girl Guard, Adventure Corps, and junior soldier troops from six corps rose to the challenge of overseas child sponsorship.

New this year was a Creative Arts Rally that incorporated the traditional singing company competition. This format allowed not only singing companies, but also many other musical groups and soloists to participate in an afternoon of musical offering to our Lord. From this event the Santa Fe Springs Corps Singing Company was selected to represent the Southern California division at Live ‘07 during commissioning weekend.

When asked about the day Divisional Commander Lt. Colonel Paul Bollwahn commented that it was important to hold such an event to build a sense of community within the Christian family. “Today is all about fellowship,” he said “and fellowship is one of the five basic elements of Christian community.”

A young man named Isaac certainly enjoyed the fellowship of the day. He entered the Haven in Los Angeles just one week before attending the event and came to participate in the basketball tournament, but found much more. He related the story of running into an old high school friend who was playing basketball for the East L.A. corps. “This is wonderful,” he said “I would definitely come again.”

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