Breakaway Weekend 2024 – Our Purpose-Driven Ministry Trip to Pennsylvania

Feb 15, 2024 | News, Current Students

Our Purpose-Driven Ministry Trip to Pennsylvania

The Grace Christian University Travel Ministry team recently took a trip to Strasburg, Pennsylvania. Here they had the opportunity to lead worship, teach from the Word of God, and share the love of Christ with the middle school and high school youth from Eastport Bible Church of Eastport, NY. The weekend was full of fun games and activities, powerful worship sessions, and time spent studying scripture. Many students experienced a renewed connection with God and a deeper understanding of their faith. Others encountered God for the first time and made the decision to receive His gift of salvation and put their trust in Him.

Breakaway Weekend

Breakaway is an annual weekend retreat for Eastport Bible Church’s youth group at Streamside Camp and Conference Center. For the last several years, Grace has sent a team to help with this retreat to minister to and build lasting relationships with the youth from Eastport. This weekend retreat serves as a much-needed opportunity for Eastport youth to “break away” from their daily routine and immerse themselves in God’s Word and the love of a Christian community.

Breakaway was a power-packed event filled with inspiring worship sessions, engaging Bible teachings, and intimate prayer gatherings. The team from Grace poured their hearts into creating an atmosphere where participants could encounter the presence of God and experience His life-transforming power.

Through thought-provoking teachings from Marc Paskiewicz, a Pastoral and Biblical Studies student at Grace, youth were challenged to deepen their faith and strengthen their relationship with God. Lives were changed, testimonies were shared, and commitments to serve Christ wholeheartedly were made.

Mathlete vs. Athlete Competition

An annual tradition of Breakaway is a head-to-head competition where two teams battle for the Breakaway trophy. At the beginning of the weekend, everyone was assigned to one of two teams. The two teams were the Mathletes, known for their exceptional problem-solving abilities, and the Athletes, who showcased their physical prowess in various challenges and games. The competition brought together students from different backgrounds and abilities to face-off in a variety of challenging games and relays. The best matchup was when the Athletes took on the Mthletes in a 5-stage relay race. Each stage required every member of the team to participate and complete the challenge at hand. The challenges were designed to test the strengths and weaknesses of each team, from number games, kart racing, and marshmallow and cheese puff eating contests to a mini golf challenge. The mathematicians used their exceptional problem-solving skills and worked as a team to finish the relay well before the athletes. This victory earned them points and gave them the confidence to continue with the competitions ahead. The competitions became increasingly more physically demanding, as the teams faced off in a basketball and dodgeball tournament.  Through well-strategized play calls and excellent teamwork the Mathletes took the victory to claim the trophy at the end of the weekend’s competition.


Worship and the Word

During Breakaway, worship played a central role in creating an atmosphere where participants could connect with God in a profound way. The team from Grace selected powerful worship songs that spoke to the hearts of the youth. From joyful, high-energy songs that had everyone dancing and praising the Lord to heartfelt songs of surrender with hands raised and voices lifted in adoration to God.

In the middle of each session, Marc Paskiewicz, a Biblical Studies student at Grace, would open the word of God and deliver a message. He spoke about finding our identity in Christ, God’s gracious heart, and shared the gospel message and the salvation we have in Christ. He delivered a moving message on the importance of reaching out to others and being a light in a dark world. He emphasized the need to have genuine compassion for those who are lost and searching for meaning in their lives. Marc encouraged the students to boldly share their faith and use their unique talents and abilities to make a difference. These thought-provoking messages were delivered with passion and clarity, challenging the youth to apply biblical truths to their everyday lives. Through these teachings, the Eastport youth were equipped with practical tools and insights to live out their faith in a meaningful way.


Witnessing transformations: personal stories of lives changed

During the Breakaway weekend, we were privileged to witness firsthand the transformative power of God’s message in the lives of students. At the end of the last session, the youth had the opportunity to share personal stories of reflection on the weekend and what their experience was. Many shared testimonies of how God had radically transformed their lives and set them free from. pain, fear, and addiction.

One student shared how she had been struggling with depression and a sense of hopelessness, and during her time at breakaway, she found a renewed sense of purpose and a deep connection with God. She shared how her faith had been reignited and how she now felt compelled to share her story and the love of Christ with others who may be struggling.


Lasting Impact

At Grace, our commitment extends beyond the walls of our community. We’re dedicated to graduating courageous ambassadors for Christ who make an eternal impact wherever they go. This isn’t just limited to students pursuing a degree in ministry. Our desire is to equip every Grace student this way. That’s why ministry training at Grace isn’t limited to the classroom. We will actively engage with the local community, seeking opportunities to build relationships with individuals who have not yet encountered God’s message. Through volunteering, community outreach events, and intentional acts of kindness, we will be the hands and feet of Jesus, creating opportunities for conversations about faith and sharing God’s love. We pledge to remain steadfast in our efforts to disciple and support those who have encountered God’s grace.

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