Posted on Mar 07, 2018
James Mitchell filled in today for President Paula Brahan. Mike Ratliff thanked Gene Owens who gave the invocation and to Wes Brooks who led us in the Pledge of Allegiance. Our door greeters today were Mike Ratliff and Shane Germany.
Mike Ratliff welcomed our visitors. Mark Killingsworth is a guest of Paula Brahan and Doug Everett is a guest of Chrissy Yelverton.  Mike Ratliff then introduced today’s guest speaker, Mitchell Williams, who is the USM Campus Director for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.  He also serves as the football team's lead pastor and chaplain.
Mitch gave away a John Smoltz autographed baseball, a signed softball from Face of Softball, and an All-American US Olympian John Finch and a Darryl Strawberry autographed baseball.
Mitch encouraged members to pick up some of the literature he has made available about several of the Fellowship’s upcoming events and activities. Some of those include the 6th Annual Bobby Myrick FCA Golf Classic coming up on May 4, 2018, at the Hattiesburg Country Club. The organization will also host the Good Friday Breakfast of Champions on March 30, 2018, beginning at 7:00 a.m. at the Payne Center at University of Southern Mississippi.
Mitch reported that Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) now has 3,000 coaches, players, and volunteers represented on 28 campuses and involved throughout the State of Mississippi. The primary mission of FCA is to use youth sports as a way to reach children, both athletes and those they know. By having a positive influence on these young people, FCA believes they have the potential to change the world.
In 2008, there were 24,000 babies born to single mothers in the State of Mississippi and stated that, at present, 70% of athletes in Mississippi are being raised by unmarried women. Mitch also reported that 60% of all of the Mississippi athletes come from a fatherless family. He went on to report that 80% of all children involved in organized sports are not members of a church. Finally, he noted that 40% of all the girls who participate in organized sports in Mississippi do not make it past the 8th grade and that 50% of them drop out of the program when they become pregnant. In 2010, more girls than boys participated in organized youth sports for the first time in history.
Mitch maintains that FCA is one way that community involvement can make a difference in the lives of our state’s children.
He challenged Rotary members to give of their time and substance to a mission, noting that today’s world is not the same one as when they grew up. He challenged Rotarians to use their gifts to change the world.
If you’re interested in more information you can contact Mitch at or 601-270-4601.
With no other business or announcement, Paula adjourned the meeting with our motto, “Service Above Self.”