ST. PETERSBURG — Last Wednesday, St. Mark Missionary Baptist Church, under the leadership of Rev. Brian K. Brown and with the support of its membership, sponsored its fifth annual Back-to-School Bash (BTSB) for the families and children in the Childs Park Community.
The BTSB became an outreach ministry to the community in which the church is located, 1301 37th St. S, beginning in 2012. St. Mark viewed the event as an opportunity to help meet the needs of families with school aged children. This means ensuring that they are outfitted with the school supplies needed to aid in their academic success.
This year’s event saw more than 400 over-all participants at the park. In addition to the nearly 300 backpacks filled with school supplies being distributed, there were free haircuts, free food, arts and crafts, two performances by the St. Mark JOY Mime Troup, moonwalks and games for all in attendance.
With so many schools failing within our community, it is St. Mark’s goal to make sure that they are equipped to work from the very first day of the school year. Educator Khana Riley-Rebman was on hand to encourage the children with a message to “be positive” as they return to school, and Rev. Brown used the occasion as an opportunity to share a brief gospel message with the participants.
The BTSB is one of many community-based projects sponsored by St. Mark throughout the year. The mission of the church is to identify the needs of the Child’s Park community and to assist in every way that they can by sharing the love of Jesus and bringing hope, help and healing to those in the community.