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Archive for the ‘Youth Group’ Category

The Center Youth Column in the Honorable “Plain Talk”

Posted by thesinger on May 25, 2008

Yes, I write a column for the local churches’ monthly newsish kind of thingy on the activities of the Center Youth Group. (The magazine is called “Plain Talk”) Marvin left a comment on my last post about how I should post it on my blog. Since he is a good friend and a worthy adviser, I will accept his suggestion. Below is the aforementioned column:

“For this month, I will reject the idea that every youth activity must be duly recorded and inserted into the annals of the honorable Plain Talk. Rather, I will pick the more notable events, and expound on them in greater depth.

On Friday evening, April 25, we, the youth, hosted a banquet for all church members age sixty-five and older. Different responsibilities were given to the youth. Some provided valet parking while others created the food. (By the way, it was an ambrosial meal!) Several ushered the people to their seats, and a lone photographer (me) walked around shooting pictures. The primary goal of the evening was to make “the older generation” feel loved and appreciated by “the younger generation.” To the extent that this was accomplished, we say, “Thank You God!”

The guests were seated in such a way that across from every couple were two or three empty seats. These empty seats were then filled with youth, who, in general, had a wonderful time of communicating with the guests.

Our guests were given the opportunity to bless us by sharing stories from their childhood, their youth group days, and the way life operated when modern transportation was not available, when trips to town were something special, and when walk-a-mile was a legitimate and normal game to play at singings. We heard stories about men who impacted lives; we heard of some practical jokes that were administered to innocent victims at railroad crossings; above all, we heard and learned much from the wisdom that the older generation shared with us. I believe we as youth have a responsibility to learn all that we can about where we came from so that we make intelligent decisions about where we should go. To our guests, I say a big thank-you for coming and sharing with us from your heart.

On Sunday, May 11 the youth gathered at the only local Beachy-owned car dealership, Oatney Automotive, for our weekly singing. I would like to primarily comment on the sound/acoustics that we experienced because of the location. The sound had more space than the usual living room to bounce around and therefore created a somewhat larger/richer sound, overall. Because the ceiling is lined with plywood, however, the sound was absorbed and hollow-sounding instead of vibrant and alive. To summarize, because of the larger space and plywood-lined ceiling, it was a huge, absorbed sound. To sing in a large space was pleasant for something different.

Youth Chorus has started and we are making music unto the Lord. Already, the songs are becoming alive with depth and meaning, and the music, for the most part, is advancing as well. Chorus is a good time!!!

The Annual Youth Picnic occurred on Saturday, May 17. The all day event was pleasurable and even relaxing, unless, of course, you played sports, or swam in the river, or went canoeing, etc., etc. In the morning some time after we arrived at Camp Mennoscah, about ten of us youth practiced the B.O.D.Y. skit, which is a skit that dramatically shows how each member of the body must do his/her own job, and not someone else’s. We then performed the skit during the morning meditation as the main subject matter.

Allow me the privilege to stand on my soapbox and verbalize some thoughts that were stirred up because of the B.O.D.Y. skit: “Because our church is ‘large,’ one of our difficulties is finding the job that matches the abilities, gifts, and talents of each member. The skit said how that each member do the job he/she is good at. I’m saying that each member, including youth, needs to have a job that fits him/her so that he/she can feel needed/useful/loved/etc. To suggest that an easy solution lies just around the corner would be a lie. To be concerned and pray about the problem is the minimum we can do.” End of soapbox—you may go back to your parents. . .

In conclusion, the Youth Group continues to enjoy being and growing together. May the good Lord bless!!!!”


Posted in Kansas Youth Chorus, Life, Youth Group | Leave a Comment »


Posted by thesinger on March 28, 2008

The Youth Group got together at Partridge to hit little white balls around. It was a good time. I landed on an average or slightly below average team for the last 4 games. We lost the first game to a team that was definitely better than us. The second game we decided to “whip some tail” and so we beat. The third game was intense. We were playing against a team whose weakest player was about as good as our average player. I think you get the idea. We led off strong to about 7 points, then, got spiked on by Micheal Y. over and over since we didn’t have any blockers in the front line. Eventually, we got a little wise and had a blocker go up from our back row. After three tries, Kenneth Shenk managed a very successful block where he was traveling in a more horizontal/diving method then a vertical method, got one hand on the spiked ball, and shut Micheal down!!

From there we went up and caught them at about 20 points. (We were playing rally to 25–win by two.) Unfortunately, they took off from 20 and got to their game point, 24, and stopped. In an amazing comeback, we tied them at 24, gained another point on a spike they goofed, and then we had game point at 25. We served the ball. They had bad ball handling and got all tangled up. The last hit of the game was a too-long pass to the center middle that went into the net, then dropped down behind the back of the center. We SCREAMED!! WE SHOUTED!!! WE LET THEM KNOW THAT THIS LITTLE PEEWEE TEAM HAD TAKEN THEM TO THE GAME AND WHOOPED UP ON THEM LIKE THEY COULDN’T IMAGINE!!!!!!!!! What a feeling of power. What a feeling of accomplishment, fulfillment, and success. It was a good time!!!!


Posted in Good times, Volleyball, Youth Group | 3 Comments »


Posted by thesinger on March 10, 2008

We met at 6:45 at Center. I shot one picture that made it worth to carry my camera in there. Yay!


My group visited Vera Nisly, an interesting and visionary lady. One fascinating subject line we discussed was about Vera’s siblings. I had heard the names together before (all but two of the many live here in the community) but I rarely connected them since I’ve never seen them together as a family. Anyway, here’s a picture of Vera.



Posted in Youth Group | 3 Comments »

Box Social

Posted by thesinger on March 7, 2008

It was a good time. I estimate that there were about 16 boxes. (Someone please correct me if I’m wrong.) I purchased a green, square box approximately 10 inches per side. Because it was spring-themed, it was painted with yellow flowers and ornamented with “Hillary”, a three inch tall, green, and obese frog who held a Welcome Spring! sign. My motives for purchasing that box over others was simply that it was the cheapest one to be had. Logic (and my father) tells me that my father approves of “thrifty” sons who don’t waste his money.

Titus auctioneered and Justin was the official “holder of box while bidders bid” kind of person. The proceeds went to the Youth kitty. (Rumor has it she made a goodly sum of approx. $600. i.e. A very fat kitty.) The food in my box consisted of three subs, a relish plate, chocolate chip cookies, chips, and pudding. It was ample, and very tasty.

Afterwards, the majority of the group played an enjoyable and exhausting game of Human Dutch Blitz. My team, which consisted of Jewel, Karen, Micheal Y., Kenneth, and myself, lost miserably, but felt that were the best losers we knew how to be. 🙂

I have two pictures I would like to share, both of which came from other people’s cameras since I forgot to take mine. (Shem and shame were mine during this time of forgetfulness.) The committee forced all “couples” to take their picture together. (Loyal took this one) It’s of me, my newly purchased box, Hillary, and the maker of the box. (I will allow my readership to deduce whatever they will concerning the evident action of the maker of the box.)


The next picture has a more random touch to it, but is nevertheless pertinent (I’m not sure how). The primary reason for the picture is that the three of us, Danny, Kenneth, and myself, all wore orange shirts. I thought it was impressive that the three of us sat down together just because we could, and we were all wearing orange. (Small thrills, I know, but small minds must have something to occupy their minds.)

Photo credit:Heidi Mast

Most box socials have stress in some areas, and this one was no different. All stress aside, it was an enjoyable evening with an enjoyable group of homies.


Posted in Friends, Good times, Love and Romance, Stress, Youth Group | 4 Comments »

Good morning all you fine readers.

Posted by thesinger on February 13, 2008

Well, it’s not quite morning, but you at least received the message that I am greeting you with much more vigor than normal, and that I consider you to be very fine readers. (I’m not sure how a reader could be a “bad” reader.)

I am sensing a slightly brainless post coming on about tonight’s activities, what I did today, and some random observations. . . Read at your own risk.

First, I will be attending a normal Wed. evening church service where a layperson will share on the topic with which he has been assigned. This time, the topic is called “Making Life Rich Without Any Money” by Perry Lee Stutzman. I think what we have here is a good mesh between topic and speaker. It will be quite amazing.

I went to school today. I told Mr. Schrock a weak pun that I will tell to you now. (Mr. Schrock really likes puns, btw.) “Why do skunks like Valentines Day so much? Because they’re so sentimental.” End of pun. VERY FUNNY HAHAHAHA. Well, something like that.

I also ate food today. All except one bite of it was very good.

I also felt very tired today since I worked so hard the evening before and because I talked to a dear friend for a very long time last night. . .

Random observation #1: I am anticipating attending Shenandoah Christian Music Camp in the early summer of this year. It is tentative as of yet, but “things” are looking VERY hopeful. . .

Random observation #2:I need to get ready to go to church soon.

Random observation #3:The youth have a Valentines social planned for Friday night. It should be appropriately random. Aren’t all Kansas YG events random?


Posted in Music, Random, Tired, Youth Group | 1 Comment »

Party all day and all night. . .

Posted by thesinger on February 10, 2008

Yup, on Friday night, I attended a Youth Group Volleyball game at Abbyville. It was actually some pretty decent stuff for KS volleyball. There was a small turnout with about 15 to 20 people there most of the evening. (The average youth activity has about 35 kids.)

Afterwards, ryannisly.com/blog and kevinnisly.com/blog and wannabemexican.wordpress.com came to my house where we ate food, talked, partied, etc., I got about 5 to 6 hours of sleep, then went to Arlington, KS, and purchased a dozen donuts and four hulking cinnamon rolls from Carolyn’s Essenhaus. Yup, you guessed it. I was providing the baked goods for another coffee party, this time to be held at Jac and Matt’s house. Kevin, of course, brought his dear friend Edna. For this we were all very grateful. (Weeeelll, maybe Matt wasn’t. . .) So, we devoured all the goods, except one roll, and one pot of coffee and several shots of espresso. It was good times! 🙂

After the goods and the coffee were devoured, we were very bored and very undecided about an appropriate activity for all. This led, somehow, to the question: What kind of games can you play at Wal-Mart? We found a game online called “10-In-10”. We decided that this would be a good way to party randomly in town doing something that most people don’t do regularly, if you see what I mean.


Oh, the prize for the winning team was a free meal at a cheap fast food joint paid by the losers. Unfortunately, ryannisly.com/blog and thesingerman.wordpress.com lost to kevinnisly.com and jacobnisly.com/blog. Too bad, how sad. . . It was random though, and very much fun. 🙂

That evening then I invited myself to jacobnisly.com/blog and wannabemexican.wordpress.com’s house for pizza. Kudos to Rosa for the excellent pizza.

It was a day full of partying and fun. I would most certainly do a repeat of the day if given the opportunity. . . 🙂


Posted in Coffee, Friends, Random, uber, Volleyball, Weekend, Youth Group | 2 Comments »

Random Kansas Party Pictures

Posted by thesinger on January 27, 2008

I’m not sure if I feel like writing comments on some of these pictures, so, maybe I won’t on some of them.

Perhaps TheFlyingFatMan could make a nice profit if he sold his abundant fiber. . .?


Technically, this is not a “good” photo. I like it anyway. . .


We played a version of Bible Trivia. My team lost. . . 😦


Kenny was really asking questions regarding my sanity. I think he was a little concerned. . .

We played a balloon popping relay race with two teams. My team lost again. . .


I think perhaps the newest baby (balloon) on the block is a very large one. . .

“The Remains”

We also played another kindof weak game where you attempt to open a Hershey’s Kiss with oven mitts. It was also a relay race, and my team lost, again. . .

Random. . .


People were playing ping-pong and Pool as the need arose throughout the evening.

Yes, Shane is glad to be back from Faith Builders; Dorcas seemed a bit more exuberant then usual most of the evening.

The evening was appropriately random, filled with about 1 hour of committee-planned activities, and the rest was just good old hanging out with the homies.



Posted in Party, Pics, Random, Youth Group | 4 Comments »

Kansas: Random?

Posted by thesinger on January 25, 2008

The answer? Yes. Very. Tonight I’m going to an official youth group activity that was announced with the main activity as “Random”. This could mean that the committee just didn’t know what the activities will be, or, as I prefer to think about it, our Kansasness is showing through again. 🙂 I like to live in Kansas. The homies here are TOPS and there are very few other places I would rather live.

I hope to take my camera (if I don’t forget it) and shoot some pictures of some of our activities. There could be some choice opportunities. . .

In other news, the parents have gone in to PA in preparation for Floyd’s wedding. (I’ll be going next Thurs.) Should be some good times/parties. . .

Gonna run. Got some work that should be done before tonight. . .



Posted in Friends, Good times, Party, Random, Weekend, Youth Group | 3 Comments »

Random Pictures from Bible Study at Gary’s

Posted by thesinger on January 18, 2008

After the Bible Study was over and we were just sitting around, shooting around, etc., Gary asked me if I’ll take these images and put them on my blog. I responded cheerily with a yes. 🙂 So, here we are, and I’m ready to post some random pictures of the Bible Study at Gary’s.

Gary also asked me if I would post the most scandalous type of picture. I happily assured him that this would be the case if possible.
Case in point: (He has the shingles.)


“RAN-dom” (I love Canon)

B-rian has a nice thick shock of hair, don’t you think?

Way to go Frieda!!!!!!!!!

Oh, in case you were wondering, Gary, (one of our ministers) consented to give us a year’s worth of bible studies about the subject “Christian Stewardship.” It was good and will continue to be good.



Posted in Friends, Life, Pics, Youth Group | 3 Comments »

A long time ago. . .

Posted by thesinger on January 11, 2008

away back when me, myself, and I (plus some other people) was on the Youth committee, we were responsible to organize, plan, and execute an all day Youth Picnic. This was all fine and good. Most of the day went very well and it was not a bad time. After we got home, however, was when the work began. We used hay bales to sit on in the back of a grain-truck. This is fine and good, but there is a fair bit of work involved to get the straw bales and then to take them back to their place of residence. So, having that background, the story can now continue in full force.

We took the truck (and straw bales) to their owner and nicely placed them in the loft of his barn. This process was not without it’s own pains, but overall it went ok and the good feelings were spread around with abandon because we had finished the last and hardest part of the picnic!!!!!!!

As we drove into the lane to Cedar Crest–the place where the youth had met for the picnic–the lights of our car illuminated five straw bales that were in hiding behind the waist-high brick wall that surrounds the front door of the church. Yes, it was dark. Yes, we were very tired after playing hard all day. Yes, we had very little energy left to invest in hauling those bales to their proper home. At this junction in the story, you may want to ask, “But couldn’t you just have put the bales on the grain truck and taken them home?” The answer to this question is not very complicated. It was just that the truck went home directly instead of going back to Cedar Crest.

Well, what do you do? Do you sing songs? Shout angrily? Become extremely irate? Laugh at our stupidity? Rail? Rant? Rave?

The answer: Yes.

Next, you sit back, relax, and enjoy some Mt. Dew.

Next, you make bad faces at the camera, because you really are very tired and NOT EXCITED about those bales. . .

Next, you load the straw bales on to the back of Big Joshes Volvo.

Next you cheese real big for the camera because you really have accomplished a real feat of power/energy/force/beef/brawn/dynamism/force/horsepower/intensity/might/muscle/potency/strength/vigor/vim/virtue, or something like that.

Next you see lots of straw on the sidewalk and because tomorrow is Sunday, you decide that you must sweep it up.

Next you pose with your newly-made band, and take an inspiring picture.

Next you think, “Oh, but I wouldn’t want to remember the evening with a stupid picture like that!!” So we commence to shoot another “more decent” one.

And then we’re done. At least, I had a curfew and had to go home. I heard reports that said that the party continued for quite some time.

So, thanks for allowing me to tell you this story. It has blessed my heart to retell it and I hope it has blessed your heart to hear it.


Posted in Friends, Good times, haha., Life, Party, Pics, uber, Youth Group | 6 Comments »