Future Leaders

I woke this morning surrounded by a gymnasium floor of High School Students. What a great group of young people. They are all future leaders committed to service and making a difference in the world. After we packed up, I walked to the home of Pastor Dwight Davidson. He graciously offered a shower and breakfast. Shortly afterwards, his son Isaiah walked with me to the United Church of Granville, where I was invited to preach the sermon for the 10:00 a.m. service. After the worship service, I had the opportunity to have a discussion about poverty and many other issues affecting our county. The discussion was lively and what a blessing it was to be able to learn from one another. After leaving the United Church of Granville, I was welcomed across the street to talk with the Sr. High Youth Group at the First Presbyterian Church in Granville. The youth group there will be collecting items for homeless care bags that will be made in June.

I left the church and then walked up the hill to meet with Denison Students who were having a dodge ball fundraiser to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Licking County. Dodge balls have changed a lot since my day. They felt a little like Nerf balls compared to the hard balls we used in gym class when I was a kid. However, despite the hardness of the balls, the game was as fierce as ever, and the college students had a great time helping to raise funds for one of our United Way funded programs.

After the dodge ball game, I then met up with about 20 students at the Alfred Center where we had refreshments and talked about the priorities of the blueprint and ways that they can help make a difference with many of the identified issues. What a great group this was. I hope to see some of them in the future as they get involved with some of our local programs and go on to help make a difference in the world.

Finally I was greeted by a few students who live and participate in the Denison Homestead program. The students live in a community and try to live in harmony with nature as well. They have a wood burning stove to cook on, a compostable toilet, solar panels, and an outdoor wood burner along with a few gardens and chickens. Leigh Ann could not follow me back to the homestead in the vehicle because they try to preserve the place from traffic, so I said goodbye and told her I would meet her at 5:45 a.m. out by the road. I enjoyed the serenity of the place and the thought provoking talks with some of the students who live out there. I commend them for wanting to live a more intentional environmentally sustainable life while being accountable to the community that they have found themselves in. I pitched my tent on the top of the field at homestead and was thankful that, despite it raining all night, that I stayed dry while I slept.

Please continue to support our Journey through Licking County by signing up to walk, sleep out, or by donating to the Give Walk Do 50 cause either online at or by giving directly at our office.


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United Way of Licking County


PO Box 4490

Newark, OH 43058-4490

Office Located at:
50 S. Second St., 2nd Floor
Newark, OH 43055


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