Every year PC3’s student ministry hosts an event called New, a lock-in for high school girls. This lock-in provides girls in 8th to 12th grade the fresh reminder that they are loved fully by God. The peaceful and girly environment creates space to foster high-quality friendships with girls and leaders alike. Each part of the evening is intentionally designed for connection, conversation and bonding for the all-female assembly in attendance.
The main speaker, Marcy Bolick, used humor to provide awareness about how a really difficult life event doesn’t have to define our walk with God; rather it’s more important to focus on the state of our heart and the reasons why we make mistakes in the first place. Marcy’s message engaged the girls toward realizing that they are beautifully created in God’s image. She taught us to remove the sunglasses of insecurity, which we often forget to take off, that prevent us from knowing what a wonderful creation God intended us to be.
In the early night hours the girls rotated by age group through stations; a boutique of hand-me-down clothing, a craft and a speaker. Girls shopped in the boutique of donated items and each girl brought an item to give and went home with a different one. It’s fun for the girls to try on clothing, shoes and accessories that were loved by someone else.
Next, girls spent time making a prayer board with magnets in their own style. We spent time hammering and gluing the pieces together into a masterpiece. For the final station Laura Bullock, an Urban Missionary with Vigilant Hope, shared how their ministry is impacting the less fortunate in Wilmington. She taught the girls the appropriate way to interact with the homeless, how to get involved in the ministry and the realty of homelessness in our own city.
After taking time for relaxing and quiet time, girls gathered in worship once again. Our voices were lifted to God and we had a newly refreshed vision. It was a very powerful environment. The passion in the room was electric. Each girl wrote on a tile what feelings and insecurities she was leaving behind to become a new creation in Christ. Then all the tiles were mosaicked together to make a beautiful masterpiece.
New is always centered on the verse, Psalm 139:14: I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well.
The capstone of the evening is always the dance party around 2AM for everyone to just be silly before settling in for a movie.
Pat Connolley, a student ministry staff member, pours her heart into this event which has been taking place for seven years. The sleepover leaves all the girls exhausted, but spiritually fed and reinvigorated to carry out God’s mission in their schools and lives.
Story Written By: Megan Crowe