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Youth group celebrates Christmas early

IRONTON — The season of giving is still six months away, but a youth group in Ironton celebrated a little early.

The youth pastor at Sharon Baptist Church organized a “Christmas in July” party Wedneday for his youth to remember the importance of giving without wanting anything in return.

Aaron Fields, 25, has been the youth pastor at Sharon Baptist for about 2 years, and this is the first “Christmas in July” they have celebrated.

“Christmas is just a fun time of year,” said Fields. “Everyone is more giving.”

Fields and his group hung Christmas lights and decorations. They even had a blow-up Christmas palm tree.

During the regular Wednesday night service, the congregation joined in with the youth and sang carols and enjoyed a reading of “The Christmas Story.” The youth also played games and had cookies and milk.

There were also 300 pounds of crushed iced delivered to make a snowman on the lawn of the church.

All of the festivities were for a greater purpose than just having a party.

Each of the youth brought a new toy, book or sports item to be placed beneath the Christmas palm tree. All of the gifts are going to go to Mended Reeds Foster Care.

“It’s a fun way to raise awareness,” Fields said.

“It’s a great way to show the love of Christ,” said 16-year-old Tanner Dutey. “It is going to be really cool.”

Tanner said he brought a football to place under the tree.

His sister Taitlyn, 14, was also there. She said she brought a makeup bag to place under the tree.

“It’s a good way to remember how much we have and how little they have,” she said. “And it puts things in perspective.”

“We are just excited to be able to serve the community in this way,” Fields said. “I fully believe that Christ gave his all, and we can do the same all year long.”