Gospel in motion

Monday, March 25, 2019

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MANDEVILLE, Manchester — An estimated 5,000 volunteers were on Sunday, March 17, part of an initiative called Operation Save a Youth (OSAY) across Manchester.

The activity was organised by the Youth Ministries Division of the Central Jamaica Conference of Seventh-day Adventist.

Pastor Kevan Barnaby, Youth Ministries director, said that over 80 projects were done in the parish by the youth volunteers from the Central Jamaica Conference, which consists of Manchester, Clarendon, and St Catherine.

“What we do for OSAY [is] we mobilise young people in the church and in the community to be actively involved in community outreach and community impact. The young people, as you see, they are fired-up, they are very much passionate about community welfare…We want to just keep our young people active. If they are just there in the church sitting down then they are not really fulfilling the mandate given to us by Jesus, where He mingled with men and then He was able to meet their needs,” Barnaby said.

He said that projects done on the day included the cleaning of streets, painting of the community centre, the renovation and even the building of houses for the less fortunate.

“Some of the projects that weren't completed will continue to completion,” he said.

The Mandeville town centre was abuzz with mobile clinics offering free medical check-ups, HEART Trust/NTA enabling on-the-job certification for individuals such as barbers, hairdressers and in customer service, as well as individuals and organisations doing demonstrations or showcasing products or services.

Solaine Hill, a self-taught braid stylist operating for 31 years, said that she came out to get certified because it was a convenient time and certification will give her the ability to take her business outside of Jamaica.

The day's event ended with education grants to 20 Adventist and non-Adventist high school and tertiary students, awards to community leaders and a gospel concert.

Audley Shaw, Manchester North Eastern member of Parliament and Government minister, was one of the community leaders awarded.

He said that keeping the youth positively engaged was important as there is no future without them and currently there is a crisis of human under-development.

Jon-Rick Woollery, assistant public relations officer for the Manchester Adventist Youth Federation, said the OSAY initiative has been around since 2015.

“It is really the gospel in motion,” he said in reflection.

— Alicia Sutherland

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