Chicago Impact

A 19-year-old evangelist sees the heart of a "mean guy" soften during an Impact Movement outreach.

By Rich Atkinson   |  8 March 2011
image-chicago-465x280 Photo by Tom Mills

Taylor Starks, 19, knocked on the door of a house in the Roseland neighborhood -- the same area on the South Side of Chicago where only 6 months earlier a young man was beaten to death.

“You all only have 5 minutes because my game is about to come on,” the old man said when he opened the door.

Oh, man, Taylor thought, how come I get the mean guy?

Taylor was one of more than 100 college students who received evangelism training during The Impact Movement’s student leadership conference in Chicago that hosted 400 people.

The Impact Movement is a partner organization started by Campus Crusade for Christ that helps the U.S. Campus Ministry reach out to African American students.

During that outreach day, Taylor helped with Here’s Life Inner City, the compassionate urban ministry of Campus Crusade. He and others went door-to-door talking with people, conducting surveys and inviting them to church at the Agape Center.

The man invited Taylor inside, but at first gave only short answers to his questions.

So, Taylor started discussing the upcoming game and then offered to pray for the man. The man’s scowl turned to a smile and he invited them back another day.

“With a little bit of prayer and a little bit of kindness, anybody can be reached,” says Taylor.