Brittany Ayers, sophomore volleyball player at John Brown University, is working to establish a Fellowship of Christian Athletes club at JBU this year.
“FCA at JBU will provide an environment where student athletes are easily able to recognize not only their athletic potential, but their spiritual potential,” Ayers said. “My hope is that JBU athletes, through FCA, will be able to fully grasp what it means to play their sport and run their race with God.”
FCA is an organization that works to promote the Gospel through athletics, working with athletes as well as coaches. Their mission is to “present to coaches and athletes, and all whom they influence, the challenge and adventure of receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, serving Him in their relationships and in the fellowship of the church.”
“As an athlete at JBU, I understand how easy it can be to just go through the motions and simply become subject to your athletic schedule,” Ayers said. “It’s especially easy as an athlete to think that I don’t have time or need to worry about joining any other extra-curricular activity or ministry opportunity.”
Ayers has had personal experience with the impact FCA has on athletes, having been involved in FCA since middle school. After attending an FCA summer camp in her home state of Missouri, she felt a calling to continue her involvement with the organization.
“The camp really opened my eyes to how powerful it could be to really play sports for a higher purpose,” Ayers said.
Since then she has interned with FCA in Huntington Beach California and continues to share her passion with FCA with those around her.
“My passion for FCA through high school, as well as my direct involvement with FCA ministry this past summer, definitely influenced me to start the FCA at JBU,” Ayers said. “God continually put the idea on my heart last year.”
In the past JBU has had an FCA chapter. The last one took place place during the 2013-2014 school year. Usually students led these FCA meetings once a week.
This time, Ayers wants the club to last. She has spoken to the Northwest Arkansas area FCA director as well as the campus representative about restarting FCA at JBU.
“Both have been extremely supportive and helpful as we face the beginning stages of starting a lasting FCA at JBU,” Ayers said. JBU Athletic Director Robyn Daugherty said it takes a solid leader and a group of students passionate about being part of a leadership team to be able to run a lasting FCA.
“I would love to see this happen,” Daugherty said.
Ayers recruited Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach Von Eshnaur to sponsor the club, and Phillip Todd, Nathan Kuykendall, Connor Christian, Bailey Sager and Bethany Maddox to lead the club.
Ayers plans to hold a big kick-off event for FCA on November 18. She also plans to host regular meetings for participating athletes once a month.