Alexandria, Virginia – During the first District Union of 2016, the Great Northern District (GND) Youth Department was finally able to celebrate the 2016 Youth of the Year Award nominees after snow storms cancelled the official celebration. With three to four nominees in four of the five categories and voting performed by their peers, competition was fierce and voting was very close. In the end, Praise Center Church was represented well by our youth and young adults. Below are the results:
Young Man of Valor
For the second consecutive year, Bro. Eryck McCown was recognized as the GND's Young Man of Valor. Below is the write-up for Eryck's nomination.
When I think of a young man who fits the mold of what a great Young Man of Valor truly is, I think of Eryck McCown. A Young Man of Valor is very rare in today’s world. A Young Man of Valor is a man who is not ashamed of loving Jesus. He walks in nobility, strength of heart, and courage of conviction. He also understands the necessity and benefit of a good work ethic and a good education. Eryck embodies all these attributes.
Eryck is a part of the CISL Program at Hylton High School and also a part of the National Honors Society. He is taking a full AP schedule and is a member of the varsity lacrosse team. During the summer, Eryck participated in an engineering summer internship with the esteemed Navy Research Lab. At the end of the internship, he submitted a paper on “Investigating the Effect of Analysis Intent on Community Detection,” which was well-received by the review committee. He plans to attend Virginia Tech or James Madison this fall, majoring in computer science.
Eryck is the lead musician at his local church, Praise Center COGIC. Along with Eryck being heavily involved in his local church music department, he also is involved in his District and State music departments as well. For the last two years, Eryck has served on the IT Team at the International Auxiliaries in Ministry (AIM) Convention. He is a very invested in not only his music and education, but he is also heavily invested in his growing relationship with God. His relationship with God and his salvation has always been of the utmost importance.
Eryck is an amazing young man of God and his reputation and valor precedes him. He is a young man on fire for Christ and fits the mold perfectly for the Young Man of Valor Award.
Young Woman of Excellence
Sis. T'onna Cooley was recognized as the GND's Young Woman of Excellence, but we recognize our nominee Sis. Dymond Starr for a job well done. Below is the write-up for Dymond's nomination.
A woman of excellence strives to be excellent in every area of her life and Dymond Starr fits this description. She is a hard-working, loving, and caring person. At Praise Center, she is a tithe payer, serves as the announcement clerk, leader of the hospitality ministry, sings on the praise team, and serves as the ministry’s director of art. Dymond’s handywork can be seen in the sanctuary and throughout the offices. Dymond loves to sing and praise the Lord. She uses the voice that God gifted her to glorify the Lord on the local, District and State levels. Dymond uses her gifts to build up the church and the body of Christ.
Not only does Dymond work hard at church, she works hard on her career. As a hair stylist, she has quickly excelled into one the best stylist at the Hair Cuttery. While working, she often can be heard discussing church and God on a daily basis. Dymond is not ashamed of the Gospel, which allows her to be an example of holiness on the job. At any time, she’s willing to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. In addition to her career, she’s looking to continue her education this fall.
For now Dymond is a hair stylist, but she expects and prays for more to come in her life. At the rate that’s she’s going, those blessings should come very soon.
In the closest vote amongst the five categories, Sis. Crystal McCown lost to Bro. Sergio Foster by a single vote. We celebrate Crystal for a job well done. Below is the write-up for Crystal's nomination.
From infancy, Crystal has been a member of the Church Of God In Christ. From Sunshine Band to YPWW and Purity Band, Crystal has been trained about the life and legacy of holiness. She can recite the books of the Bible with ease and quote scripture from memory. Crystal uses her training to serve in the following capacities at Praise Center: Usher Board member, Youth Church teacher, Youth Bible Study teacher, and A/V technician. On the State level, she serves on the Liturgical team. Whatever her hands can do, she’s willing to serve the Lord and the church.
Not only does Crystal allow her light to shine at church, but she also shines bright at Hylton High School as a 9th grade student. Inducted into the National Junior Honor Society during the final semester of 8th grade, Crystal has continued to excel educationally as a member of the A/B Honor Roll. She’s also a member of the junior varsity cheer team, where she often leads the team in prayer during practices and competitions. In biology class, she’s willing to provide the “Biblical” perspective when issues about evolution and morals arise. Crystal is not ashamed of the Gospel and of the church.
Crystal is an example of a youth who was trained up in the way that they should go. She’s willing to let her light shine at all times and is already walking as a “young woman of excellence!”
The other winners were Sis. Colleen Brown (More Than A Conqueror) and Sis. Trinity Mack (Leader Among Peers). We are godly proud of the youth at Praise Center Church. With new youth and young adults joining the ministry, we look for them to continue to excel in 2016 and submit nominees for all five categories for the 2017 Youth of the Year Awards. We expect nothing but continued greatness from this group!