Peace and acceptance is something our society always seems to be looking for and I was no exception. I grew up in a home where alcohol and fighting were common; consequently, it was a place where I did not want to be. By the time I was in my teens and early twenties, I found myself absorbed in living “life to the fullest” and searching for someone to love and accept me.
What if you spent your whole life believing what you thought was right, but you were wrong? You would think that after being raised going to Church on a regular basis that one might know all you need to know about the Bible. Even after attending a Christian College as a young person, I continued to stay involved at my local Church. It is what we always did.
My name is Jack Hammond, and this is my story. I was born in Allentown in 1967, and I grew up in a fairly religious home, though we didn’t attend church on a regular basis. Many times my grandmother, who was very faithful to go, took my sister and me as much as she could. I can remember when my mom and stepdad finally made the decision to go regularly. That lasted for a few years, but tapered off when the pastor, who my parents really liked, moved on.
There have been, on occasion in my life, and I am sure in yours, certain moments in time when a word or group of words cannot be uttered. Oh, we may attempt to muster the effort – maybe even use facial expressions as a type of “visual aid,” but try as we might, words fail us from time to time! In my life it happened twice. My name is Lino Zarrillo, and this is my story.
When I was about 15 or so, I began to wonder and inquire about what the Bible really had to say. As a child I had attended Sunday school at the Hereford Mennonite Church. And, as a young teen, I went through their catechism classes. But I didn’t feel like I was learning what the Bible really had to say, so I began my search for the “truth.”
My name is Corey Petroske, and this is my story. I was raised attending a United Church of Christ/Lutheran church, whose membership mostly consisted of middle-aged to senior-citizen Pennsylvania Dutch members. There were some other young kids, but they didn’t stay very long. So, obviously, I didn’t feel like I fit in.
My name is David Manohar, and this is my story. I was born and brought up in India. Though our family was not Hindu, I had many friends who were Hindus and one good friend who was a Muslim. I grew up in a church-going family, went to church regularly and was active in Sunday school and other church activities. I considered myself a good Christian and did not have any concerns about my spiritual condition.
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