Blue skies and sunlit paths through William DeLong Park in Bowers created a perfect Eden for the fifth annual Rock the Light Music Fest hosted by Jamie and Amy Roth, Light the Way Ministries.
This year, the festival had even more meaning for the Roths. Last December, Amy had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia; all of her treatments were in Hershey. Amy focused on prayer, scriptures, and Christian songs. The Roths also focused on organizing Rock the Light Fest no matter what happened.
“I don’t let myself think the negative things. I had my focus on Jesus the whole time,” said Amy.
As of June, Amy was declared in remission.
Amy said a lot of people have shared some awesome stories and testimonies of things that happen at Rock the Light or even the other events.
“You need to come out and experience it,” said Jamie. “Every year it’s getting bigger.”
“It’s good music, good food, good activities,” said Tammy Leisey, Bowers.
“It’s an opportunity to glorify the Lord with a bunch of other people with similar feelings,” said Katie Ache, Kutztown.
About 275 people took advantage of a perfect late summer day to enjoy free family activities. Kids sat still long enough to get their faces painted like the Drama Mime Team before racing around the playground or trying their hand at some of the games and crafts. The kids also had the opportunity to interact with members of the Mime team. Although the Mime’s could not speak, they had no trouble communicating fun with the kids.
People could sit and enjoy the music and performances such as that of He Who Has An Ear Sign Language Ministry.
“We worship in sign; we just move to make it a little more interesting. Music transcends all languages so it’s easier to break the ice with music than just throwing the Bible at them. Most deaf people haven’t heard of God so we’re trying to reach out to them so they can hear about God and be saved, but if they can’t hear, they don’t know what we’re doing,” said Carolyn Garrett.
Garrett and Lynette Zulli learned to sign and interpret sermons. The music they choose has heavy beats which enables their audiences to feel the music and when they move, it helps the deaf understand more of the beat. They also teach classes and offer auditions to join their team. To learn more, email HEWHOHASANEAR9@aol.com.
“We make sure to make ourselves available for when people ask us to come to events like this. This is how we can reach out to the deaf community,” said Garrett.
A group from the Spring Valley Prayer and Healing Ministry tent joined the crowd that gathered to watch these women perform.
“They’re very anointed in their work. There are a lot of great people that are in their ministries entertaining us today,” said Sharon Jackson.
Jackson and her team have been studying biblical healing for almost six years. They belong to the Spring Valley Church of God in Temple.
Other entertainment included Chase Nafta, Jay Simonson, and Brett Rush, pastor of Shiloh Community Fellowship in Quarryville and founder of Brushfire Ministries, a contemporary Christian band.
Rush said that road ministry carries a very high feeling with a return of positive vibes. He feels there is an impact on people when he shares his music. He said it is refreshing and energizing to be out on the road to share the music God birthed in him to encourage other people. In turn, the people encourage Rush so he can go back home to his church every Sunday and pass this feeling on to his parishioners.
“What you believe feeds your potential. Your potential leads to action. The action produces results and the results you experience in life ultimately feeds your belief,” said Rush.
AJ Martel, youth pastor at Grace Evangelical Congregational Church in Kutztown felt this was an opportunity to talk to other people in the community. He feels that as more people spread the word about Rock the Light Festival, it will continue to grow.
Founded in 2007, Light the Way Ministries hosts free small concerts and community events for all ages. Any money raised during these events is given back to the community to various non-profit organizations. Its annual, Willet Snow on Christmas?, tour concert is Sunday, December 16 at the Topton Grange, Topton. Willet is a band from Maryland and this will be its fourth acoustic Christmas concert for LTW. For more information, go to www.lightthewaypa.com.