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Four bands play on at Jesus Jam in city

June 10, 2007|By TAMELA BAKER

HAGERSTOWN-The crowd started out light, but organizers of this year's Jesus Jam at the City Park band shell anticipated the music and food would keep drawing park visitors throughout Saturday night.

Real Life Community Church has sponsored the event for at least a half-dozen years.

Organizer Butch Moser said last year's jam drew about 500.

Until this year, Moser said, the only band playing was the church's own praise band, Ps 150. But three other bands - the praise band from Mt. Nebo United Methodist Church in Boonsboro, and independent bands Faith Child and Common Clay - joined in performing contemporary Christian music from 2 to 9 p.m. The concert, and the hot dogs and popcorn the church handed out, were free.

"The whole idea is it's all free because God's free," Moser said.

Last year, the church distributed between 700 and 800 hot dogs, Pastor Jim Chevalier said.

"It's a simple act of kindness to let them know God loves you," he said. "Everybody loves music."

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The church formed nine years ago and meets at Northern Middle School.

"We're a conservative theological church," Chevalier said, but the congregation uses radical methods to spread the Gospel. "We take it to the streets," he said.

Moser and Chevalier said people attending the concerts often want to talk about Christianity, and some start attending the church.

"It just plants a seed," Moser said.

Inviting other churches this year underscores that the focus of Jesus Jam is on God, and not just Real Life Community Church, Moser said.

If you missed Jesus Jam, stay tuned. The congregation already is planning its next outreach, called "Pray at the Pump," Chevalier said. They're hoping to schedule it for next month.

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