While the "pink" in PinkOUT Sunday at New Direction Christian Church has long emphasized Breast Cancer awareness, this year worshippers were encouraged to get "out" of unhealthy relationships as the church recognized both breast cancer and domestic violence awareness in one powerful service.
Worshippers were encouraged to wear pink and/or purple to show their support. All attendees received abuse hotline information, self-examination info about breast cancer and access to counselors who were on-hand to assist during service in private rooms.
Although generally addressed by adults, this year's serious content and worship service was led mostly by teens as this bracket has seen a rise in reported instances of domestic violence. In fact, ages 16 to 18 have the highest reported cases of rape and assault.
A DJ welcomed worshippers before blends of live gospel and Christian hip-hop music layered with poetry and a skit about domestic violence rounded out the 90-minute worship service. The sermon for the morning delivered by Senior Associate Pastor Karren Todd was entitled, "I Need Some HOPE!" The powerful message featured two emotional testimonies from members who have survived breast cancer and domestic violence.
Throngs of members flocked to specially marked pink offering baskets to contribute to Sunday's special offering, which will be matched by the church and then donated to cancer research funds.
The main campus of New Direction Christian Church is located at 6120 Winchester and members gather for Sunday worship at 8 a.m. and at 10:30 a.m. A campus in Collierville is located at 114 Highway 72 East, with services at 9:15 am on Sundays. In 2014, a new campus will launch in Holly Springs, Miss. at 231 Martin Luther King Dr.
New Direction Christian Church was founded 12 years ago by Pastor Stacy L. Spencer.
(For more information, visit www.n2newdirection.org or follow the church's Twitter feed @ndccmemphis.)
(Victims of domestic violence are encouraged to call the Counseling Center for the church at 901-344-5378 or 901-849-PRAY for 24-Hour Prayer.)