Sherry Washburn

Staff Writer

Members of the Christian Motorcycle Association from as far away as Augusta rode to Baxter Springs First Assembly of God July 24 for the 2nd annual Biker Sunday. While everyone is always welcome at First Assembly, a special Biker Sunday was instituted when Gil Starlin, one of the church members and his wife Patti, began riding with CMA. 

 The idea of CMA actually began in 1972 when Herb Shreve and his son bought motorcycles. They attended a rally in 1974 and saw many people who didn’t know Jesus as personal Savior. He shared his idea with a couple of friends who prayed with him about it and to shorten the story, in 1975 they received their non-profit charter and CMA was born.

According to its website, www.cmaus.org, “CMA is a non-profit, interdenominational organization, dedicated to reaching people for Christ in the highways and byways through motorcycling…” CMA is not just a motorcycle club, it is a ministry that reaches people and teaches them about Jesus.

Mike and Becky Bright, state coordinators for Kansas said that there are 1,000 active members in Kansas with a total of 3,000 on the rolls. There are currently 29 chapters in Kansas with more chapters in the forming stages. Baxter Springs is one of the chapters in its’ forming stages. There are also has numerous CMA chapters worldwide.

Before the morning sermon, the children who had participated in M.A.P.S (Mission Adventure Preparation School) Vacation Bible School preformed the song “Set the World on Fire. “  During VBS the children learned about various missions oriented programs and how to witness to their friends and families about Jesus.

 The Speaker for the morning service was Jeff Michael from the Fort Scott CMA chapter. Michael accepted Jesus Christ as his personal savior in 2001 and began speaking and leading others to Christ within 6 months. He has been riding with CMA for 7 years and said he had been “going to CMA meetings before I had a bike.”

During his sermon, Michael said people make excuses for not coming to church. “Some Christian made me mad so I won’t come to church anymore”. Then he went on to say “How many have ever had a meal they didn’t like? How many plan on eating this afternoon? That one bad experience didn’t stop you from eating.” His point was that just because you had one bad experience, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go to church again. One of his final points was the reminder “Jesus Christ gives us hope.”

Following the service, there was a free dinner for all attendees catered by The Smokehouse.

Anyone who may be interested in learning more about CMA or joining a chapter can contact Mike or Becky Bright, 620-431-7454 or by logging in to www.cmausa.org.