View slideshow Student body assembles for SYATP (VIDEO)
Annual prayer focuses on school, community
At the early hour of 7 a.m., 75 students met in the Ground Zero quad for prayer and worship before school during the annual See You At The Pole event, Sept. 28. Though SYATP was started in 1990 by a small group of students in Texas, it continued to increase in popularity until it included millions of schools and students.
For one day, across the nation, students gathered at schools to pray for their friends, teachers, communities and country. At the early hour of 7 a.m. 75 students met in the Ground Zero quad for prayer and worship before school during the annual See You At The Pole (SYATP) event, Sept. 28.
SYATP was started in 1990 by a small group of students, and continued to increase in popularity until it included millions of schools and students. The event is meant to be student-initiated, student-organized and student-led.
The devotion focuses on encouragement for student life and issues. Although the morning hour keeps some students from attending, most see the importance of coming together as a school for prayer.
The morning also brought a family feeling for new students like Kiera Brown, '17.
"I think it is important to pray for the school," Brown said. "Even though it's a Christian school, it's important to have God as the center. I got a big sense of community, especially since I am new. For me, it helps getting used to everything and seeing how faith works at the school. It's really cool to see that we all share the same faith."
"I thought it would be a great thing to add on to our theme, 'We Are One,' to come together as a school and pray, not only for our own community, but for the world as a whole and anything that God put on our hearts." -- McKay Mohun, '13
Morgan Childs, '12, appreciated the opportunity provided for prayer as a student body and the chance to follow God's will.
"I came to take advantage of the opportunity to pray as a family," Childs said. "We get to pray for each other and our local area and the government. If God isn't involves everything will fall apart. I got to connect with a few people that I hadn't got to in awhile. I really thought that this is what God wanted us to do. I didn't expect it to be so fulfilling."
Though some think the impact of prayer is prominent only among the students, Brown believes it impacts all those who hear about it.
"It makes a statement to our city," Brown said. "Even though our economy is bad we are able to keep prayer and worship first priority."
Though the early hour kept some students away, many saw the importance in unifying their school in prayer. Devotions ranged from issues in student life to the poor economy.
Some students who live outside of Fresno, like Kevin Thao, '13, found it difficult to attend the early morning meeting.
"I didn't go because I was busy and I live far away so I would have had to wake up earlier than 5 a.m," Thao said. "But I still think its really important for people to go. It creates a community not only within our school, but for all the people around it."
The idea of a time for community prayer attracted students like McKay Mohun, '13 who attended the event for the first time.
"I got a greater sense of what it means to be a family within the school," Mohun said. "We can be open with our friends about what God puts on our hearts; it's a time to be open about it."
The atmosphere of the morning providing a feeling of openness and trust within the students, which Mohun thinks ultimately incorporated into FC's year-long theme.
"I heard about it before and I always wanted to be involved," Mohun said. "I thought it would be a great thing to add on to our theme, 'We Are One,' to come together as a school and pray, not only for our own community, but for the world as a whole and anything that God put on our hearts."
For past coverage of SYATP, read the Sept. 28, 2009 article, SYATP intercedes for school, government.
For more news, read the Sept. 29 article, Music department participates in upcoming processions.