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Churches join to make an impact on community
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It was warm Saturday at First United Methodist Church’s Change the World, Impact The Community Day, but Jeff Martin was cold for a good portion of it. The minister of youth at First Baptist had the pleasure of manning the dunk tank and he took the plunge several times – whether the children around him actually hit the mark or not.

The timeless dunk tank was just one of the festivities at the new event, which coordinator Claudia Minge said she hopes will become an annual affair. Food, children’s games and live gospel music, including performances by the women’s trio Abiding Love and the men’s quartet Joyful Messengers, provided additional highlights

Around 30 business and non-profits set up informational booths to explain and promote their causes. Minge said the groups focused on enrichment efforts, like the arts, healthly lifestyles and recreation. All proceeds from the event will be split between local mission groups, including FaithWorks, the local food pantry, Garden of Gethsemane Homeless Shelter, the Lions Club, Newton Medical Center and Washington Street Community Center.

“If we impact our community we can change the world,” Minge said. “We’re trying to do more in our community and be more involved, because what’s Jesus told us to do.”