Tuesday, May 3, 2005

May 3, 2005

1:30 PM After linking to an article about Cowboy Church on the rodeo circuit, I got this email from Scott Mahlstedt:

Doreen and I are rodeo fans. We go to several county fair rodeos each summer and have been to a number of PBR (Professional Bull Rider) events. Pro Bull Riding Outreach has been holding Cowboy Church on Saturday mornings at most PBR events for many years. They started out as an outreach to the Cowboys, Stock Contractors and others involved in staging the events. Several years ago they started inviting the fans. We have attended a number of these services and find them very inspiring. They even hold a service in a Las Vegas hotel ballroom during the annual finals event that attracts thousands of people. There are many Christian Cowboys and many are active evangelists to others in their sport. It is not uncommon to see a Bull Rider kneel and pray in the rodeo arena after a ride (or a buckoff). Clyde and Elsie Frost distribute a Cowboy Bible in memory of their son Lane who was killed by a bull in 1989. Rodeo is also one of the few public events that embraces Christianity. Every rodeo we have attended has started with a prayer, often invoking the name of Christ. This is all probably more than you wanted to know about rodeo but I hope you find it interesting.

I find it all fascinating. Back in the 90s, I got hooked on watching the Mesquite Rodeo on the old Nashville Network. Liked it so much that we took a trip with Gary and Dawn Olson to the Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming. Rodeoing is a way of life that most of us know nothing about it. As you said, the rodeo folks tend to be very open about their faith. I think riding a buckin’ bronc or an angry bull will make you a praying man in a hurry. 11:04 AM Some good news … Darin Weil reports that the “Calvary 500” now stands at 311, with several more groups to be added to the total in the next few days. Out goal is to train 500 people in evangelism this year. We’re well on target to reach that number in the next few months… . The Legacy Campaign has reached another milestone. We crossed the $800,000 threshold after Sunday’s offering. Several months ago, we owed $1. A month ago we owed $893,000. As of today, we owe $798,000. We are asking God to help us pay off the remaining debt by Thanksgiving.

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