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Youth invited to ‘see the cross’

On the weekend, young people often like to go see a movie. This weekend, Green Tree Christian Fellowship hopes they will come to “see the cross.”

The first-ever See the Cross Conference will be an event featuring Christian bands, fellowship, merchandise and a renowned preacher. It will be today and Saturday, with the doors opening at 6 p.m. each day at Green Tree and the services beginning at 7.

“This is going to be basically a youth conference,” said Chase Hawsey, event organizer. “It’s basically a challenge to young people to reach out and find that purpose that God has for them in their lives. In this modern world, some people may said that Christianity and religion are boring and it’s not any fun to be a Christian.

“We want to reconnect with teens and show them their purpose, through Jesus and through the cross.”

Two live bands will play at the conference — Friday night’s performance will be by Ohio Avenue, a band out of Birmingham, and Saturday’s entertainment will be the a local band, The Chase. Wes Snider, a youth pastor from Birmingham, will be the speaker for both nights.

“Wes travels around the nation speaking to young people,” Hawsey said. “He helps out with a radio broadcast there in Birmingham at least twice a month, doing devotionals for youth. I’m sure he’ll bring a great message for our young people.”

Hawsey said that Friday night’s events will be primarily the concert and Snider’s preaching, but Saturday will be busier.

“Saturday we’ll have some games, prizes and giveaways and stuff like that,” he said. “One of our giveaways is going to be a football signed by Bobby Greenwood (of the Alabama Crimson Tide), and I believe he’s trying to get some other guys from the team to sign it as well.”

There is no admission fee to the conference. Hawsey said there will be concessions available, as well as T-shirts for $12 each.

“We’re going to take up an offering each night as well,” he said. “Talking with everybody, I feel pretty confident that we’re going to have at least 200 people attending each night, but we’re going to be prepared for 350.”

Hawsey said he hopes for the conference to become an annual event.

“This is going to be the first year, with our band — The Chase — hosting it,” he said. “It will be an annual conference every April.”

Green Tree Christian Fellowship is located on U.S. Hwy. 84, slightly east of the Wal-Mart SuperCenter.