The Fellowship of Christian Athletes opened a separate office to minister to Dawson County at the beginning of 2019 and for the last four months newly appointed Area Representative Sam Reed has been building a strong foundation for which his passion shines through when he talks about his job.
“I have been directly in student ministry for six years now full time,” Reed said. “Students are at the heart of me. I love students, I love seeing and bringing out the very best in them. That’s what I feel that I am called to do in this time in my life and FCA gives me the opportunity to do that.”
A native of Cumming, Reed graduated with a degree in Business Administration from the University of North Georgia before he decided to pursue his lifelong desire to be a pastor at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.
After he obtained his Master’s in Theology, Reed returned to Cumming and started as the student ministry for the First Baptist Church of Dawsonville.
“I’ve been a part of the community for awhile now,” Reed said. “I love students, I love seeing and developing their hearts and their faiths and just helping them grow as individuals. Middle school and high school is just crazy these days.”
Established in 1954 by Don McClanen in Norman, Ok., the Fellowship of Christian Athletes was created “to demonstrate steadfast commitment to Jesus Christ and His Word through Integrity, Serving, Teamwork, and Excellence” according to the website and has been active on campuses across the country since 1966.
FCA is a recognized club on all three Dawson County campuses to include the high school, junior high and middle school, and the groups of athletes meet once a month in a “huddle” to listen to guest speakers, usually athletes or coaches from the local community, and discuss faith as it relates to sporting experiences.
“We are part of the high school, the junior high, and the middle school and all three operate the exact same way,” Reed said. “I personally bring in a speaker, a motivational speaker, and they tell the athletes about what sports and faith did for them in their lives and careers.”
Traditionally managed by the Forsyth County chapter of the FCA, the idea to split Dawson County into a separate district was brought up over the summer of 2017 and Reed took over as the full-time director in November of 2018.
“FCA opened up where they said we’ve seen your heart Sam, we’ve seen how much you love students, we’ve seen your vision of where it can grow,” Reed said. “We want to ask you to come and direct things in Dawson County. We want to see growth.”
Reed spent the last six months reaching out to community groups and leaders in an effort to gather the donations and sponsorships necessary to begin implementing his vision, and he is excited to be able to welcome and thank the community in the first major event of his tenure, the Annual Banquet and Auction on May 5 featuring retired hall-of-fame quarterback Steve Bartowski.
“This is one of the best nights that we have, potentially we’ll have over 600 people there for this,” Reed said. “It is a celebration of what happened in the year, but it is also a way of us enjoying a dinner together. When you’ve got 600 people in the same room that has the same cause, and the same heart that you’ve got, its just a wonderful evening all together.”
For more information on volunteering or donating to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, go to www.fca.org or call (678) 617-1003.