Baptist group gains momentum

About two dozen OCCC students joined another 1,200 of their fellow Baptists at Momentum, a conference for Baptist Collegiate Ministry chapters from across the state. The Momentum conference was held Sept. 9 at First Baptist Church in Moore.

For the past six years, the Baptist Collegiate Ministry of Oklahoma has been hosting the conference and OCCC’s chapter has been attending since the beginning, said BCM Director Brandon Laib.

Students said they enjoyed Momentum because of the fellowship they get, not only with their own chapter, but also with others across the state, Laib said.

Collegiate Ministry Specialist John Strappazon, who oversees all BCM chapters across the state, agrees.


“It’s great for students to see people who are like-hearted like themselves,” he said.

But Momentum’s purpose was more than just fellowship. Students were “challenged to go out and love their world in Jesus’ name,” Strappazon said.

This year’s speaker, Afshin Ziafat, spoke about what students can do to impact their world for the better by loving and serving others, and by sharing their stories of faith.

“If you want your life to live beyond your life,” he said, “you have to understand the Gospel.

“If you understand the Gospel, it will send you.”

Students were given an opportunity to serve others that very night when an offering was taken for the Dayspring Villa, a shelter in Tulsa.

In addition to offering housing to victims of domestic violence, Dayspring Villa offers housing and spiritual and emotional healing for the victims of human trafficking.

Human trafficking is defined as the unethical, selfish use of people for the satisfaction of personal desires and/or profitable advantage. This includes underpaid or unpaid workers and victims of the sex trade.

According to a presentation given by Kelly King, women’s specialist for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City is one of the worst cities for human trafficking, because of the interstate highways and trucking industry.

In the U.S., those who are most at risk for the sex trade are 12- to 14-year-old girls, often runaways, immigrants, or girls who are brought to the U.S. under false pretenses, King said.

“It’s something that’s so incredibly heartbreaking,” Laib said. But Laib was encouraged by King’s presentation.

“It’s good to know what actions we can take to help stop this and to know how we can help these girls.”

The students’ offering for Dayspring Villa totaled $4,285.61.

Baptist Collegiate Ministries meets on campus at noon Mondays in the theater foyer in the Arts and Humanities building and at 12:30 p.m. on Thursdays in room 3NO in the Main building.

For more information, contact Brandon Laib at

To contact Katelyn Hardcastle,


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