"We are putting Christian back into the C in YMCA," said Pastor John Sprankle.
He was talking about a new Bible study that will no longer be shut away in one of the YMCA's small rooms, but will be held in the open and will be open to everyone.
The program will be a Bible study about the Sermon on the Mount. It will kick off at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 27, and will continue each Monday. The sessions will last one hour and will be non-denominational.
"There will be no collection taken. There will be no preconceived idea as to the text's meaning, and there will be no particular version of the translation used," Sprankle said.
The study will take place in the YMCA food court. Sprankle said everyone who uses the YMCA in Boardman, walk by that food court and this would be an opportunity to get involved or just lsiten.
The idea came from the "core committee" of Sprankle, Rhonda Wilhelm, James Leone, Linda Modic, Joe Simon, and Ken Donaldson. Sprankle, Leone and Donaldson are all local pastors from different denominations who have brought the Bible study programs to the Davis Family YMCA.
"We're making this public," Sprankle said. "You don't have to be a member of the YMCA to take part."
He said the idea came up in the committee when they realized the membership in Boardman is more than 12,000.
"We realized we are not reaching out to our own members," Sprankle said. "That is why we are holding it in the open area of the food court."
As for how long the program will run, Sprankle said there is no definite deadline.
"As to how many weeks or months, it really involves how ever long it takes," he said. "It could continue for a year or more."
Anyone, member or not, who wants to take part in the study group can simply head to the food court at 11 a.m. on Monday. Non-members should check in at the front desk where arrangements have been made to allow entry to the food court.