By Sarah Pride
Patrick Henry College
As part of an always entertaining schedule of events during Homecoming Week, Patrick Henry College’s student-run International Justice Mission (IJM) club has arranged a “Mission Abolition” benefit concert on October 1. The Reilly band, a group known for its Christ-exalting lyrics and unique sound combination of rock and dueling violins, will perform. Dr. Wayne Barnard, Director of Fellows and Interns at IJM, will be speaking as well.
The IJM club hopes the concert will draw together the local community and raise both money and awareness for IJM and its mission to rescue victims of slavery, sexual exploitation, and other forms of violent oppression. The hope is that many alumni and parents of students returning for Homecoming Week will be able to attend. Tickets, available through the PHC website, are expected to sell quickly.
The IJM club’s newly elected president, Gracy Howard, began planning the concert with a dozen or so other students more than a year ago, hoping “to inspire others to do something and to minister Christ to the community through young people passionate for a cause.” To this end, the team raised a significant portion of the funds needed to proceed with a concert through a 5k race in spring of 2011.
The planning process launched in earnest when the club began contacting Christian performing artists. While the first few they approached seemed promising, none panned out. “Then we started praying,” says Howard. She had seen the Reilly band when they visited at Grace Community Church in Ashburn, and she was impressed. A violinist herself, Howard admired what she calls the “beautiful and unique” style of their “electric violins.” When she contacted them, they were excited to help.
“They really want to come and bless us,” she says, smiling. “They care about both the cause and about PHC.”
Ticket proceeds will go to support IJM. They cost $5 for PHC students, alumni, faculty, and staff and $10 for everyone else. Buy them here.
The PHC students and alumni who helped prepare this concert include Alan Carrillo, Stephen Williams (Government, ’11), Ian Reid, Grace Powell, Cordell Asbenson, Alyssa Mundy, Danae McGregor, Aaron Strassner, Justin Bullock, and many others. They hope it will stretch their own community beyond its boundaries while blessing those in the surrounding area.
Find more information on the Mission Abolition concert website, designed by senior Ian Reid.