Wow! What a crazy year this has been so far. I’m sure you are all feeling the same way right now, especially if you are preparing to send your kids back to school. I am thankful that God is in control because I definitely have been reminded that I am NOT!

A Broader Perspective 

As many of you know, I serve with HOPE61, One Mission Society’s human trafficking prevention ministry. Like most international travel, my ability to minister in other countries has stopped because of the coronavirus. Although this has been challenging, I am still able to keep in contact with our trainers and conduct some trainings around the world. Thank you Zoom!

Our brothers and sisters in many areas are struggling, not only with illness, lack of food and work, but under the strict curfews and penalties for being out too long, whatever “too long” is deemed to be. In some countries, the fines are more than $30,000!

We trust God with all these things as we prayerfully work towards what ministry will look like now, and when we are again able to travel. Please keep HOPE61 and all of our partners, including those who are more vulnerable now to being trafficked because of the chaos caused by the virus, in your prayers.

Stepping In As Youth Director

Several months back, I was asked to step in to lead the Youth Ministry while Pastor David Piper was on sabbatical and I will continue in the role part-time now that he is attending seminary.

My wife and I have served the children and youth of DCC in various roles over the years and my desire is for them is to grow closer to Christ. This can take place from wherever they are at in their own personal journeys with Jesus.

Although this is a strange time for all of us, it is a unique opportunity to connect at a slower pace and personal level, even though much of the ministry until now has not been face to face! I still wake up sometimes feeling like I am stuck in an episode of the Twilight Zone!

Walking Through The Quarantine

Even though our ministry has been limited, we were able to keep up Zoom youth and small group meetings during the school year. I want to thank the wonderful group of volunteers who led these each week. It would not have been possible without you!

Over the summer months, we put on a virtual scavenger hunt (thanks Wesley for being my wing man) and several movies nights for middle school and high-school students and young adults.

Stepping Into Fall

As we move into fall, I am looking into a few different options/combination of options for youth group, which will be dependent on any new regulations at the time:

  • In-person youth group at the church (masks and social distancing will be required)
  • Zoom meetings; this is definitely option No. 2, but we will continue to meet if in-person meetings are not allowed
  • Monthly activities (we will not be able to create a long-term calendar as we are dependent on the state guidelines). If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at Thank you for your patience as we wade through all of this together.

 Darren Sweeney, Pastor of Student Ministries

DCC Darren Sweeney By Line