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Area youth to endure 30-hour famine

By By Paul Keane
Twenty-four young members of First United Methodist Church will suffer some hunger pangs for a good cause this weekend. That's when the group will participate in the World Vision 30-Hour Famine to raise money to help alleviate world hunger.
"Last year was the first time we had done this," said Diane Everette, who heads up the youth group at FUMC. "It was a big hit, and that's why we decided to do it again this year."
The premise is simple: participants decide to fast for 30 hours and get pledges of money to help solve the problem of world hunger. This year's group features children ages 6 through 12th grade. In addition, younger children are filling "love loafs" with change for the cause. Those "loafs," similar to piggy banks, will be broken open this weekend, with the money being split between World Vision and the Atmore Area Christian Care Center's Food Pantry.
This year's event will begin Friday with a scavenger hunt for canned goods for the Food Pantry.
"We're going to go door to door, mainly for church members, asking for canned goods," Everette said. "Then, we're going to have nighttime prayer services at various locations."
The prayer services will start at 10:30 p.m. Friday in the parking lot of City Hall. The group will then travel to one of the local fire stations, to the police department, to the parking lot of Escambia County High School, to Atmore Community Hospital and to Atmore Nursing Care Center.
All prayer services will be held in the parking lot of each establishment, with participants praying for each entity. The public is invited to attend any or all of the services.
The group will officially begin fasting at 6 a.m. Saturday and keep fasting until 12 p.m. Sunday, when the group will participate with the entire FUMC congregation in communion services. After that service, a luncheon will be held for the group.
On Famine Friday, people are being asked to wear orange, the color of hope. The public is also asked to skip lunch that day and take the money saved and donate it to the 30-Hour Famine.
Each participant is being asked to raise $100 each for the organization, which is headquartered in Federal Way, Wash.