AJ BARROWS

Hometown: Littleton, Colorado

Ministry at Ablaze: High school Journey at St. Mary’s in Brenham

Contact: austin@ablaze.us

Education: I have completed 2 years of college, one year at Metropolitan State University of Denver studying aviation and the second at the University of Northern Colorado studying secondary education with a focus on history.

Ministry Background: During high school I was involved with several youth groups, both as a participant and as a youth leader. Toward the end of my second year in college I felt called to join NET (National Evangelization Teams). I was placed on parish team in Chanhassen, Minnesota. During that year, I felt that I was being called to do a second year – only in a different country. My second year, I braved the Great White North and served on a school board team in Calgary, Alberta.

Passions and interests: Something I have always been passionate about is playing, listening, talking about or working with music and poetry. I believe both of these things are more than just words but are extensions of the human heart.  One of my favorite places to be is simply outdoors in nature. It is so easy for me to see the beauty of God’s creation when I am outdoors. I also love to travel; there is so much in this world to see and I want to do more than just see it. When I go somewhere, I want to know the people, know what they care about, to listen to their stories, and to know what truly makes a place special. This applies to beautiful cities in Europe or to a small town coffee shop.

How did you become involved with Ablaze/why are you involved?  The last couple years of my life have been a crazy roller coaster. Before my time as a missionary, while I was in college, I was someone who adamantly opposed God, was openly hostile to His teachings and the church, and was living a self-destructive secular lifestyle. Yet, during my second year in college He changed me into someone who willing gave up everything to follow Him.

If there is one thing I could show all young people, it is they are loved above all things, by the creator of all things, with a love that can overcome all things, that is more valuable than all things. If someone, besides my parents, could have lead me to that kind of love when I was younger, I probably wouldn’t have turned away from God. Simply put, “The best tool to evangelize young people is other young people”-JPII.  When I heard about Ablaze Ministries and their passion for showing youth the love Christ has for them, it was clear that this ministry was my next step.

Favorite quote/Bible verse:

“To love another person is to see the face of God.”
—Les Misérables

“Don’t love till it hurts. Love until it’s done because it will hurt, but that’s why it’s called love.”
—Unknown

“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance;  perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.  Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
—Romans 5:3-8