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Student Week of Prayer Led by Students

Central Valley Christian Academy, located in Ceres, California, held a student week of prayer March 11-15 that impacted the students by letting them lead. This week of prayer was similar to others in many ways, including skits, music, scripture and speakers talking about how to connect with God. But the distinct part of this week of prayer was that the program was created and led by the students. 


The 55 high school students spoke, led music and organized the program for both the high school and the 104 elementary students. This gave the students the ability to create a week of prayer where they could learn from what was being presented and learn from creating the program.


Harold Reeve, science educator and IT director for Central Valley Christian Academy, helped the students organize this week of prayer. He said that in late January they held a mini retreat where students and staff talked about the theme. “At the retreat we had Pastor David Dean speaking. He really inspired the students. He spoke to them about speaking and the value of music,” said Reeve. This encouraged the students to create a program that focused on the Fruits of the Spirit.


A prayer map was introduced during the week, which focused on praying for people in specific cities throughout the world. “There are over 500 cities in this world with more than a million people. And we realized as we were looking at them that we’d never heard of many of them. But these are cities where God knows every name, every person—everything about them. It made us realize how big God is,” said Reeve.


Twelve speakers spoke about the Fruits of the Spirit throughout the week, including Katherine Messing and Sarah Schlater. The elementary and high school had separate meetings, all organized and run by the students. Each evening, the students sat down and created a run sheet, organizing everything that would happen in the meetings the following day.


“We were sitting down Thursday night making a run sheet for the Friday meetings,” said Reeve. “And I told Katherine I thought there was something we needed for the end of the meetings. For most meetings, at the end the pastor steps up and says some things that pull everything together.” 


Reeve told Katherine she was the closest they had to a main presenter. But when they were creating the run sheet, she left the part about a closing comment blank. She said she wanted to write it in at a later time. “I don’t know if she ever wrote it in, but she wrote it in from the front with her beautiful comments about what our role is, how to worship God and how to lift up His name. It was fantastic!” said Reeve.


“I loved how this week was centered around students and students did it all (with the help of Mr. Reeve, of course),” said Sarah, a senior at the academy. “Through students putting on the week of prayer, we saw how God is real even though we are just kids. I feel like the Fruits of the Spirit theme stuck with the kids.”


Madi, another senior, mentioned that this year’s week of prayer was her favorite. “The speakers and hosts brought strong emotions into our hearts. I wanted to be there because the environment was positive.” The students and staff put a lot of work into the week, and she said thi effort inspired her. “I saw God working through each of our speakers; my friends who spoke and my friends who listened strengthened my relationship with God. I’m surrounded by God-fearing people who love and accept me and that’s a great reason to praise God.”


Darci, a sophomore, added that she thought the week was fun and informative. “Through all the student speakers’ talks, I learned a lot, and some of the speakers brought out points that I had never thought of before. It challenged me to look at the messages in different ways.”


Finally, Reeve added, “Don’t be afraid to trust your students. When they’re tasked with something like this, they really come through and it strengthens them and your school.”


By Brennan Hallock



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