Campus Crusade

By: Courtney Hayes
By: Courtney Hayes

While most college students spend their spring break drinking beer and sunbathing, one group of young co-eds are on Panama City Beach sharing their faith in Christ.

Campus Crusade has been spreading the word of God to spring breakers on Panama City Beach for the past decade. This year their approach is a little more fine tuned, but their message is no different.

Gluttony, lust, greed; the seven deadly sins can be a common theme during spring break. That's why you may be surprised to see a prayer session along the world's most beautiful beaches.

"It's Campus Crusade, a college-wide ministry. The main focus is to equip students get the news out about God," says Matthew Lasky of Rutgers University.

These crusaders even got some insight from New York Times’ best selling author, Joel Rosenberg, who wrote “The Last Jihad.”

"Tell them to use the skills God wants them to use in a creative way," said Joel Rosenber.

There's about 1,300 crusaders here from as far north as Maine and as far west as New Mexico. They say the weather hasn't been too cooperative, but the crowd has been.

“We went down to Club La Vela in the past three days. People are really open. They have a lot of opinions; open to hearing the word," says Mandy Wilczynski.

This year the crusaders are using games like a thousand-dollar basketball toss to draw would-be sinners in, and while some spring breakers just want the cash prize, others are more receptive to the deeper message.

“I had a real in-depth conversation with them, had a prayer session by the ocean. It was nice," says Nick Mancioccha of the University of Buffalo.

Campus Crusade officials say they usually approach 10,000 spring breakers each year. Of those, about 1,000 will have deeper conversations about faith, and about 100 will actually accept God into their life.


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