Skate for Christ's Sake!

"We don't just set it up so they can watch some other boarder skate for them. It's for them to use, and for them to learn about Jesus," says John Newberry, Youth Minister of Calvary Chapel in North Austin. Opened in March 1999 and supported by the church for which Newberry ministers, the Calvary Skatepark was started as a way to tell kids about Jesus Christ.

"I used to go to Lonestar [Skatepark, see Tekgnar sidebar] as a kid. That's how I met Laurie [Pevey]. They used to have [pro skater] Tony Hawk and those guys come to town," remembers Newberry about his early love for the sport. Nowadays, Newberry blends that love for skateboarding with his love for Christ and his mission to spread the word.

"I'm a youth pastor. God gave us a trailer to put the thing in. God provided the welders, the equipment. It's a ministry for skaters," he says.

The park is open Thursdays and Saturdays for the general public. At other times, the park hits the road, taking the word of God and some choice streetcourse around Texas.

Yes, the Calvary Skatepark is a mobile ministry.

"We're taking it to San Antonio and around the state, " says Newberry. "We offer optional Bible study. We don't require kids to do anything. That's the difference between us and some other types of ministry."

The Calvary Skatepark is located at 9414 Parkfield Dr., off Rundberg. The mobile services are available for community groups and schools. Call John Newberry for more info, 719-4667.

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