On Saturday a small group of people gathered at the Windham High School flag play to pray for a successful school year. The event was hosted by the Young Life organization, which is open to all students. Last year was the first year Young Life was a club at Windham High School.
“I really wanted to do this,” said organizer Nicole Foster. The event was small this year, but Foster has hope that year after year it can become bigger. In southern states, she said, they have breakfast with the prayers.
This year Linda Babbitt from Windham and a committee member for Young Life lead the prayer.
The prayer was for all children before they start school. “Make them know who you are. Who they are in you,” she prayed. She asked that students get their identity from Jesus, not from drugs and other harmful substances. They also prayed for teachers and administrators and everyone in the school.
“We will be praying for you this whole year,” said Foster.
Foster put a prayer for her children in their backpacks every year. Last year, when there was a lockdown in Windham, she said she felt comforted because of that prayer.
The club meets at the Robie Gym in Gorham just over the Windham line on Mondays at 7:30 p.m. The meetings haven’t started for this year yet.
Cole Milazzo from Saint Joseph’s College is returning as a leader for the club. He went through a 6-week training by a local area leader.
According to the Young Life website, “Young Life's mission is to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ and to help them grow in their faith. This happens when caring adults build genuine friendships and earn the right to be heard with their young friends.”
“They’re here,” said Foster. The group was present to help after a death affected the school last year, she added. The group is slowing gaining momentum. Members meet at Dunkin’ Donuts before school to pray and center themselves for the day.
“If they are discouraged reach out to let people know. We don’t want to lose any more children,” said Tammy Bennitt.
This summer nine girls attended a Young Life summer camp. The Young Life Sebago group hopes to send 20 girls and 10 guys from Windham next year with money it raises throughout the school year.
There will be a Noon Day event that will help support international women at risk and will also raise funds for Young Life to help sponsor the campership fund.