Sr ABY is our church’s youth group for 9th – 12th graders. Our regular meetings are held on most Sundays at 6:30pm-8:00pm. These meetings usually consist of playing games, planning for future events, having snacks, and ending with a devotion by one of the leaders. Also during our special events, one of the leaders gives a devotion. If the meeting or event is close to a holiday, the devotion usually pertains to the holiday. Otherwise, we use the 'Life Book' devotionals provided by the Gideon's. We try to always end our meetings with a circle prayer. Attendance at regular meetings has varied from 6-12 teens with up to 15 teens for special outings. These numbers are up from 2016, and we are thankful to have more teens attending. The leaders continue to keep in contact with the teens through texting and our Facebook group.

When we met for the first time in January of 2017, we visited Rand Hooton at the Ross Manor Rehab and Skilled Nursing Center who was enduring a long recovery from his accident the previous September. I think he ministered and blessed us more than we did for him. It was great to see him and have him talk to the teens. Rand is an answered prayer, and the teens are reminded of that each Sunday they see Rand attend our church.

One of the highlights in 2017 was our overnight Retreat/Lock-In at church camp in Westport in February. 12 teens attended our overnight Lock-in. The Theme was ‘Just Love’ based on Matthew 22:37-40 ‘The 2 greatest commandments’ and also based on Exodus 20:1-17 ‘The 10 commandments’. We had 2 guest speakers during the evening: Pastor Mike Cantrell and past SrABY member, Logan Linkmeyer, who was a Junior in college. Throughout that Saturday night, we played lots of games, ate lots of food, and had lots of devotions based on the commandments listed in the scriptures above. We watched the movie ‘I’m Not Ashamed’ based on the true story of Rachel Joy Scott who was killed at Columbine’s High School shooting in 1999. After a few hours of sleep, we held worship service and communion in the camp’s chapel heated by its fireplace on Sunday morning.
The second highlight in 2017 was our trip in September to Lazer Kraze in Erlanger to play laser tag. 13 teens attended, and we got to use our church’s new mini-bus for the first time. We ate pizza at the church before we left, played arcade games and 4 games of laser tag at the facility, and then finished off the evening by stopping at Cincinnati’s airport observation area to watch planes fly over.

Our fundraisers for 2017 consisted of a Valentine Soup/Hotdog Luncheon in February where we raised $484. With the balance left from 2016 and this fundraiser, we were able to pay for our Lock-In which costed $800. It is an expensive event, but it is hopefully an event where the teens can grow spiritually and will remember for many years to come. We brought in $232 from the ’30 pieces of Silver’ at Easter which we split in half with the PB&J youth group. In May, we brought in $96 from ‘Casual Sunday for $1’ which we also split in half with PB&J. We did not sponsor the Dunking Booth at the Pumpkin Show in September as we had done in previous years due to the leaders’ children being involved in multiple activities at the Pumpkin Show. The leaders did not feel they would have enough time to dedicate to the dunking booth. We decided to do other fundraisers throughout the year instead. In December, we received the yearly interest on the late Ted Spurlock’s fund from the Ripley County Foundation totaling $240 which is to be used for ‘outreach’. Our December fundraiser was selling Streak Free Microfiber Cloths to our church family and community. Thank you to everyone who purchased one. At the time of this report, we did not have a profit yet totaled. We ended 2017 with a balance of $393 in our checking account without including December’s fundraiser.

We are so thankful to Dawn Brinson and Cheryl Welch for stepping up and re-starting the JrABY youth group for 6th grade – 8th grade this past fall. They have had up to 9 in attendance and are reaching a volatile age group for the Lord. More volunteers could always be used, and now our PB&J youth group for elementary age children is lacking in leaders. So, please keep praying for our 3 youth groups and their leaders to meet the needs of the youth in our church and community. If anyone would like to volunteer to help, please contact Pastor Mike or any of our youth leaders: Alan or Crystal Welch, Liz Linville, Dawn Brinson or Cheryl Welch.

Listed in chronological order next are Sr.ABY’s activities and events for 2017. The Lord has blessed us immensely! Thank you to everyone for all your generous donations & prayers!

Sr. ABY Leaders: Alan & Crystal Welch and Liz Linville


* Participated in Youth Sundays throughout the year

* Visited Rand Hooton at The Waters of Dillsboro Ross Manor in January

* Held a Valentine Soup/Hotdog Luncheon Fundraiser in February

* Went on an overnight Lock-in/Retreat at church camp in Westport with 12 teens in February

* Stuffed baggies in March for the 30 Pieces of Silver Fundraiser at Easter (Total raised = $232 split between SrABY & PB&J youth groups)

* Sponsored and provided the Children's Easter Egg Hunt after Sunday school on Palm Sunday in April

* Shared experiences about our Lock-In from the pulpit during Youth Sunday in April

* Took Mo Wiesmuller (foreign exchange student living with Linville’s) and 6 other teens out to eat to ‘Five Guys’ restaurant in Columbus in May for Mo’s farewell dinner as he would be returning to Austria

* Sponsored 'Casual Sunday' fundraiser (Total raised = $96 split between Sr ABY and PB&J youth groups)

* Painted handprints on the ABY wall of new ABY teens throughout the year

* Some teens attended church camp in Westport during the summer and had a great time

* Some teens helped with Vacation Bible School working in Recreation

* Some teens participated in the church’s drama ‘It’s a Cool Life’ in August

* Took a trip to Lazer Kraze in September in Erlanger, KY with 13 teens to play laser tag

* Participated at the 'See You at the Pole' annual event in September at South Ripley High School and provided a light breakfast afterwards

* Carved pumpkins with 11 creative teens in October on tables in the Family Life Center

* Held Annual Hotdog Roast, Bonfire & Hayride at Welch’s place in October with 15 teens attending

* Shopped for Operation Christmas Child and filled many shoeboxes with items purchased and donated from our church in November

* Dedicated 47 shoeboxes and prayed with Jr ABY teens in November for children receiving shoeboxes

* Some teens participated in the Hanging of the Greens Service

* Held Annual Christmas Dinner & Party at Linville’s house in December with 13 teens attending

Laser Tag in September

Christmas Party at Linville's