It all started with a vision. Pastor Jim and Melissa Martin wanted to make community evangelism a way of life for their congregation. A quote from Ellen G. White served as their inspiration: “In our churches let companies be formed for service. In the Lord’s work there are to be no idlers. Let different ones unite in labor as fishers of men” (Evangelism 115).
And so Go Company was formed in 2020. Every Friday evening, a group of church members gathered for food, fellowship, study and brainstorming about how best to serve the community. Although sidelined for a time with the COVID outbreak, members were soon preparing gift baskets for local teachers, EMTs, firefighters, government workers and bus drivers. Road signs were made displaying the number for an Adventist prayer line, and a free hot cocoa station was set up outside city hall for the 2020 election.
One of the Go Company’s favorite ideas was creating a parade float for the Marigold Days Festival, a celebration that brings in thousands of people from around Minnesota. It was decided to make the float in a Creation theme—complete with flowers, inflatable animals, a waterfall and two young people dressed in white as Adam and Eve. The float was a success. In addition, 2,500 packets (that included six GLOW tracts, a fruit snack and an invitation to the America in Prophecy Seminar) were distributed by children and their parents to community members who literally stretched out their hands to receive the gospel! All in all, 15,000 GLOW tracts were sent into the community, and, after attending the prophecy seminar, new members were added to the church.
This past September, the whole Dodge Center Church got involved with the float. Members volunteered their time and finances to bring our Jonah and the Whale theme to life. The float included 3-D fish, balloon sea creatures, a 4’ by 6’ whale, a bubble machine and of course Jonah, a 10-year-old volunteer who dressed the part. Many hands made light work as church members assembled 3,000 packets with five GLOW tracts, a fruit snack and an invitation to Dr. Nedley’s Optimize Your Brain Seminar.
The day of the parade, 10 families, including 21 children, participated by distributing the GLOW tract packets. Parents held bags full of packets while the children handed them out to eager children and adults alike. “I think it’s really great that our children are learning to be missionaries,” commented Christina Coleman, mother of three volunteers.
Members of the Dodge Center Church have discovered that evangelism can be a lot of fun for people of all ages. “I have been waiting to do this [handing out GLOW tract packets] ALL YEAR!” gushed 8-year-old Charlotte Voeltz.
It would seem that a new tradition has begun!
Amanda Voeltz is a member of the Dodge Center Church.