Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Members of First Baptist in Denton offer water to weekend drinkers on Fry Street
They also offer rides home and prayer.
DENTON In the Bible’s book of John, Jesus Christ’s first miracle was turning water into wine. Nowadays, First Baptist Church of Denton members pass out water to counter the effects of alcohol along Fry Street during the weekends.
Since last spring, church-going college students and UNT alumni have passed out free water bottles, prayed for students leavings bars, and sometimes offered rides home to those unable to drive.
UNT alumnus Drew Hall began performing these acts of kindness after two of his friends prayed about helping others nearly a year ago. He said giving away water bottles and offering rides are ways to assist people in a way that does not pass judgment.
“We don’t go out there to change people who don’t want to be changed or condemn people because we think alcohol is evil,” Hall said. “I think that’s usually the assumption given towards Christians.”
The students of FBC Denton have received many questions asking why they reach out in this way. Hall said questions of their true agenda are also brought up.
“Through following the example of Jesus Christ in the word of God, we are convinced that it’s the churches’ job to meet people where they are at,” Hall said. “This is just one way we feel compelled to do this.”
The group stays out as late as Fry Street is open or until their water runs out.
Most of the time, the group uses their own money to provide the water. They buy about 20 cases of 24-pack bottled water every week.
To help them get started, Brandon Fowler, partial owner of Sonic Drive-In on Fort Worth Drive, donated water from Sonic.
Because of his position at Sonic, he receives water at a discounted price. He helps out when the students need assistance and said that he would like to continue to help whenever he is needed.
“Drew told me they were using water as a way to share the gospel,” Fowler said. “That was something I wanted to be a part of.”
Anywhere from 5-20 students will help with water distribution. The project has even stretched into playing live music as well.
The group will also pray for those who ask or are willing to listen. The group has even developed relationships with bar-goers and knows them on a first-name basis.
“It’s a nice gesture for people who need the water, even though some people take advantage of it,” said business computer information systems senior Thomas Craig.
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