Churches reach out with community day

Posted: Monday, July 22, 2002

"Six years ago, I came here from California. I had been drunk and strung out for many years. I met a woman who kept trying to get me to go to church and to tell me about Jesus, but I wanted no part of that," recalled Frank Wolaver of Nikiski.

"Finally, she invited me to a barbecue, and I found a bunch of ordinary people. I went to church and it changed my life."

Sometimes, Wolaver said, innocuous events can have the most dramatic effects.

Wolaver, now director of Good Samaritan Ministries in Nikiski, wants to help more people learn what he did. That's why he has organized the Church of Nikiski's first Community Day.

The public is invited to a day of music, family activities and food from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the recreation area behind the Nikiski pool. The event is hosted by the Church of Nikiski -- a partnership of participating congregations in the north Kenai-Nikiski area.

"We're going to have bands, two women's quartets and a children's choir," Wolaver said. "We also want plenty of activities for children."

There will be crafts, games and a petting zoo to help keep children entertained, he said.

"Hopefully, we'll even have a couple of clowns," he added.

And, of course, there will be free food for everyone.

There also will be designated parking areas for elderly and disabled people.

"We want to let people know that worshipping God is a wonderful thing, it's a wonderful lifestyle," he said.

But, Wolaver added, no one will be preaching at the community day.

"We're just going to have fun."

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