Instrument Group from Watkins Glen, N.Y.

CLARKS SUMMIT, Pa.— Nervous laughter and humming echoed throughout Jackson Hall as six groups warmed up for the National Talents For Christ group competition. Students performed in categories ranging from puppets to vocal ensembles throughout the afternoon.

But in a world of constant competition, TFC is about so much more than claiming the prize—especially for the group competition, where no scholarships are awarded. These students get that. They’re here for fun, for fellowship, but more importantly—to worship.

Katelyn Kime, 17, and Rachel Bowling, 15, from First Baptist Church, LaGrange, Ohio, performed a vocal duet.

“It’s something fun to do with each other,” Rachel says. “It’s a cool opportunity!”

Nearly finishing Rachel’s sentence, Katelyn says, “To give the glory to God. We do it to praise Him with our singing.”

In the behind-the-scenes work for the competitions, the groups form a special bond. They are friends to begin with, but, as the singers from Camden Baptist Church in Wellington, Ohio agree, there’s something about having a common goal.

Not only are they growing friendships, they’re developing skills to worship God and will bless others for years to come.

Kimberly Williams, chair of the drama and puppets categories and a TFC alumnus from Amherst, Ohio, keys on what TFC is all about.

“TFC was an opportunity for me to develop my skills in an excellent way. It gives students the opportunity to experience the joy of serving Jesus,” Kimberly says. “As a judge, I want to be an encouragement rather than someone they are trying to please. I want to give them feedback and encourage them to keep developing these talents to bless others.”

TFC is the church in action. Sharing the Gospel through the arts while building mentoring relationships helps grow the future of the Authentic Church.