It’s not the same old song and dance for Step of Faith Church in Grand Rapids, Mich., whose recent Hip Hop Festival drew 500 guests.
The July festival featured 14 local artists, dancing, a free barbeque, face painting, and balloon animals.
This was the fifth year the congregation hosted the event. Step of Faith is a church plant supported by Sherman Street Christian Reformed Church, Grand Rapids; inSpirit (Christian Reformed) Church in Byron Center, Mich.; and South Grandville (Mich.) CRC.
Step of Faith’s leader, ministry associate Stedford Sims, explained, “The whole purpose is to target teens with the gospel and also to equip young leaders in this generation.”
Through a local food company, 4,000 pounds of free food was distributed at the festival. “It’s always good to meet a physical need, but we also meet a spiritual need,” Sims said.
Most of the attendees, like Phyllis Graham, came from the community. “There is always very good entertainment,” Graham said. “I talk to people in the community and socialize.”
Graham, who has attended for several years, labels the festival “a very positive event for the community.”
Although the event has a significant cost, Sims emphasized that the festival remains strictly an evangelistic ministry.
About 50 people from Step of Faith and supporting churches volunteered their time both hosting the event and promoting it through flyers and the Internet.
Sims isn’t changing his tune any time soon. He said his church plans to host the Hip Hop Festival for years to come.