Fellowship of Christian Athletes group flourishing 12.16

Written by David Green.

Morenci Middle School teacher Doug Rupp wasn’t sure how well a Fellowship of Christian Athletes “huddle group” would go over at this school.

That was two years ago and he was surprised when attendance hovered around 45 students.

Participation certainly hasn’t fallen. Sometimes as many as 70 students show up for the twice-a-month meetings.

One meeting a month is during the lunch period, with students bringing their meal to Mr. Rupp’s classroom. The other meeting is during the seminar session when students have the opportunity to prepare for other classes or get a jump on homework.

“It just seems to be getting better every year,” Mr. Rupp said.

Activities include hearing about well-known Christian athletes from college and professional sports, and using other materials furnished by the national Fellowship of Christian Athletes  (FCA)organization.

The local club sponsors a dance every spring to earn funds.

“We’re hoping to use some of that money to send kids to FCA camps,” Mr. Rupp said.

The camp involves sports activities, Bible studies, Christian rock bands and more. Scholarships could help pay the cost for students to attend.

“Our goal is to get some churches involved, too, as we continue to grow,” Mr. Rupp said.

He’s assisted in FCA by colleague Dan Hoffman.

Two leaders are hoping to help organize some community service projects in the future. He’s also been asked about starting an FCA huddle group at the high school, but he would need some high school staff members to participate, unless meetings were scheduled in the evening.

Mr. Rupp belonged to FCA when he was student at Wauseon. He thought about organizing the group in Morenci for a few years and finally made the move, with the help of Wauseon’s FCA advisor.

“It’s been a good thing,” he said. “I’m glad I did it.”


  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
  • Front.chat
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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