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Minions help deliver faith-themed message at back-to-school event

Church volunteers dressed as Minions from the popular “Despicable Me” feature film series helped make the 11th annual “Backpack 5,000/Feeding the 5,000” back-to-school event at OKC Faith Church, 800 S Portland, memorable.
by Carla Hinton Published: August 17, 2013

A local church that promised to host Minions with a message delivered on that promise during a recent back-to-school event.

The goofy yellow characters from the popular “Despicable Me” movie series danced for crowds that lined up outside OKC Faith Church for the church's annual “Backpack 5,000/Feeding the 5,000” school supply giveaway on Aug. 10. The characters — church volunteers in costume — also danced in the aisles of the sanctuary and took pictures with laughing children. The youths were eventually treated to a faith-themed skit featuring music, Minions and “Gru (children's pastor Michael Murphy),” the central character from “Despicable Me.”

Jamie Shirey, music minister and media relations director at OKC Faith Church, said the annual school supply giveaway drew its largest crowd, thanks to the popularity of the animated feature film series. Leaders at the church, 800 S Portland, had let the community know that the zany yellow Minions from the movie series would be featured prominently at the back-to-school event. Shirey said people were already lined up for the event at 5:45 a.m., when many church staff and volunteers began arriving at the church.

“We do this not just to share Jesus but to show Jesus,” the Rev. Terry Bates, the church's senior pastor, said.

After the skit, children and their parents were led to the church's gymnasium where they were given burritos and allowed to fill complementary “Despicable Me” bags with school supplies distributed by volunteers.

Lynn Kirby, who brought her great nieces and great nephew to the event, said the children were looking forward to attending the annual bash.

“I loved it and it was wonderful for them to do,” Kirby said. “For families with multiple children, this is great.”

Bates said the church gave away 10 $100 Walmart gift cards during Aug. 11 worship services. He said the Minion characters would be part of the 11 a.m. services the next three Sundays in the church's children's center. He said the church plans to distribute $2,500 in electric utility assistance at worship services over those three Sundays.

by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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