Community Church welcomes new youth minister
Thousands of people saw Mark Weaver seven years ago on the TV game show "The Price Is Right."
He was serving an internship in Huntington Beach, California, when some friends of his visited from Indiana and they all drove to Los Angeles.
It was Bob Barker’s last year hosting and the group thought it would be fun to go and watch.
"My name was called," Weaver said during an interview with The Park Record. "And I kept winning all these things."
Weaver eventually won the entire Showcase Showdown that featured $60,000 worth of prizes, including two new cars, a trip to Paris, a stove and carpeting.
He gave it all up because he wanted to serve people in the world.
"I sold both cars, and bought a plane ticket to Africa," he said. "I spent six months there investing the rest of the money into orphanages and did a bunch of outreach, including building a school."
Weaver moved to Park City 1½ months ago with his wife Julia and two children, Riley and Roman, to become the Park City Community Church’s new pastor of student and children’s ministries, and he hopes to share the things he learned in Africa with not only the congregation, but also all the local residents.
"We’re more than just a Sunday-morning program and we are an active youth and children’s program," Weaver said. "My heart is into inspiring students to become leaders and to take on more active roles in their community."
doing this, he plans to build relationships with students and children and teach them positive values through activities including service and outreach projects.
"I have a big concern about the direction the younger generation can head into in our culture," Weaver said. "I want to be a positive influence and show them that you can have fun and enjoy and exciting life and also do good and serve others."
One of the reasons Weaver moved to Park City is because he is an avid snowboarder.
"Snowboarding and other extreme and winter sports are big passions of mine," he said. "I plan to spend time on the mountain snowboarding and skiing with the youth and doing more outreach by teaching these kids to serve."
Weaver got interested in the ministry when he learned the United Methodist tradition while growing up in Indiana, but he felt his true love for serving come while he was in college.
"That’s when God captured my heart and I had a conversation with the campus pastor," Weaver said. "That meant so much to me and gave me the heart to spend my life loving and helping other people."
In addition to his venture into Africa, Weaver participated in a snowboarding program held by Youth With a Mission of the University of the Nations in Denver, Colorado.
"I learned different ways I could do outreach in a ski-resort town," he said. "Because I love the ministry, I thought this would be a great Christian influence in a winter-sports community."
When he learned about the opening at the Park City Community Church, Weaver jumped at the chance.
"What I loved is that it’s truly a community church and that the people care about social justice and making a positive difference," he said. "It reaches out to people who don’t necessarily come from a religious background, but are exploring what they believe spiritually and how to serve others. There are many opportunities to serve locally and globally. So it’s not so much about Bible thumping, but living out your faith in love and service.
"It’s also situated in such a beautiful place," he said. "You can see the chairlifts out the window as you worship. I’m really impressed with this community and so excited to be a part of it."
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