ATF: The Start of a Middle School Program

May 18, 2011

During the weekend of May 6th and 7th, Casa Chirilagua launched its community based Middle School outreach by taking 10 middle school students, 1 leader in training and 4 group leaders to Acquire the Fire in Baltimore. Many of our students experienced some of their firsts on this trip: first time leaving the DC area, first time staying in a hotel, or first time to be away from their parents for a night. While the hotel toilets were quite impressive and pool was an exciting experience, we were really there to build relationships, experience God’s love and learn about His purposes for each of our lives.

Our students encompassed a mixed background of  “church” exposure,some regular church attenders, others who have rarely set foot in a church and others who really don’t want much to do with it.  The message of “FLEE!” from temptation was one that was drilled into their heads and they will not soon forget.

The trip opened up opportunities to get to know new kids, share God’s plan for restoration in their lives, and be honest about the boundaries God laid out in the Bible for our own good. The conference covered intense, real topics which resonated with our students from risky sexual behaviors to family relationships to individual brokenness which brought a few students to points of confession and surrender. As a leader, the highlight of the trip was the opportunity I was given (after asking each student for permission) to pray over each of them  individually, praying that they would come to know how much God loves them and that He has a special purpose for each of their lives.

All ten students are already asking if we can go back again next year!

We are excited about the relationships that were started, the soil that was prepared and the seeds which were sown. We know that in God’s perfect timing some of those seeds will produce spiritual fruit. Please be praying for our Middle School follow-up bible study which will is meeting on Monday evenings  at 7:00 PM. We pray that students will come hungering for more of the hope of they heard about over the weekend. Please also be in prayer for the funds and people necessary to start a neighborhood based spiritual outreach effort in the fall.

We are a community of people “learning together to love our neighbors as ourselves” in a Latino neighborhood in Alexandria, Virginia.

As a faith-based Christian non-profit with a small staff and over 100 volunteers, we serve alongside more than 100 families and their children (1st-12th grades) each week through our community programs.

Learn More

Get Involved

Our relational network of volunteers and donors reflects a diverse group of individuals from all over the Washington, D.C. metro area. As a non-profit, we rely on the community for assisting program directors on-site, being mentors, supplying the needs of our food pantry, and everything in between. Each member of our Casa community holds a unique gift, whether time, talent or treasure.