Last weekend was the annual deer hunt held by the Special Youth Challenge Ministries of Northwest Iowa. I got to participate again this year as one of the hunting guides and was once again blessed by the experience. If you aren't familiar with SYC, they are a non-profit ministry devoted to sharing the love of Christ to physically-challenged youth and their families. Through the efforts of a multitude of volunteers, SYC is able to offer opportunities for these kids to get out into the woods and hunt deer. It is an outstanding ministry and I'm blessed to be a part of it!
The weekend kicked off Friday evening with a banquet-style dinner where each of the hunters were introduced to the audience.
The event also featured a speaker who shared a message from God's word. This year's speaker was Blake Mattocks who is an associate pastor at Faith Bible Chapel in Denver, Colorado. Blake shared what God had put on his heart on several occasions throughout the weekend and did a fantastic job of conveying the message that the Christian life is not about "Religion", but rather about a "Relationship" with Jesus Christ.
Also at the banquet, each of the hunters who had harvested a turkey at the Spring Turkey Hunt held earlier this year were presented their fan mounts. Here is my hunter, Zach Olson from Minnesota, with his trophy bird.
Saturday was the first day of the actual hunt, and I was again paired up with Zach and fellow guides Greg Somers and Josh Nelson. We didn't see anything Saturday morning, but 9-year old Connor from Green Bay, Wisconsin was successful in harvesting his first deer - a nice 8-point buck.
Saturday evening we saw a couple does, but they never provided Zach with a shot opportunity.
But Sunday morning proved to be different. We had a doe come in to within about 25 yards of the stand and Zach made a perfect shot with the 20-guage slug to bring the deer down. Congratulations on making an awesome shot, Zach! Here are a couple pictures from the field right after the harvest.
Here is a picture of Zach with his deer back at camp along with myself, Greg and Josh.
There were a total of 28 hunters at this event and 13 got a deer. That's a pretty good success ratio!
The event was once again an all-around huge success in many aspects. Lives were changed, friends were made, and God's Word was preached. I encourage you to visit the SYC website at www.syciowa.com today and see what it is all about!