Church increases youth ministryPublished 8:32pm Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Dowagiac’s Federated Covenant Church is undergoing big changes, aiming efforts at renovating the building and increasing its youth ministry.
Pastors Jen and Rob Lowe, also husband and wife, have been working with the congregation and community volunteers to bring a breath of fresh air to the church’s walls with new paint to bring out the colors in the stained glass windows.
About three weeks ago, renovations began on the downstairs restrooms as construction professionals began updating the amenities. Other changes include a move from pews to chairs and replacing tiles and carpet.
One project that sticks out is the move being made to increase youth ministry.
“We’ve partnered with First Christian Church to help grow the youth ministry and give them a place to call home,” Lowe said Wednesday. “We want it to be a community thing that is designated to the youth.”
Space is being created within the church for a youth activity room. Children and teens have been working with Chad and Dana Benkert, youth ministry leaders, to make the space their own.
“We’ve been doing this for a long time and to have a space that’s theirs is huge for them,” Benkert said.
He also mentioned the students had a major role in deciding what colors to paint the large, open space.
“They voted on the purple,” Benkert said of the imperial purple shade that covered one wall.
Another wall had the same shade painted into blocks, leaving space for youth to add their designs and names.
“We want this to be the place to be for anyone in the community,” Benkert said. “It’s open to anyone, and they don’t have to attend church to come hang out with us.”
A kick-off celebration of the new youth space is 6 p.m. Sept. 9.
“Kids you wouldn’t expect to see together, you see them together here,” Benkert said. “We want to give them a place to come to where they know they will be listened to and loved.”
For more information, call (269) 782-5656.