My name is Michael Kingsley, and I would like to introduce you to the Coalition to Save Lives, but first I would like to explain how I was introduced to this amazing group of people. I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I go where he leads me, and serve as he has me serve. Last spring, while working at Rock Ministries of Philadelphia in the Kensington area, they were hosting what was being called the “Save a Life Tour”. I have served at many events at The Rock as it is called, but when I arrived that day I was just so overjoyed with what I witnessed. We were setting up a cooking area, a stage, and several tents for prayer, clothing distribution, community groups and organizations. There were four bands that day, playing varying genres of music, yet all with Christian, uplifting themes. Joe Wardle from the Rock spoke from the word, even offering an alter call! At least a thousand people came through and received a free meal, uplifting music, bibles, clothing, help from community organizations, and connections to local churches and help for their addictions. I just had to meet the people behind this “Save a Life Tour”. I found John Simons, the leader of the Romans Road band, and one of the originators of the tour. This was their first stop on their tour, and their intention was to provide this event to five inner-city locations that summer, offering free concerts, meals, connections to churches and community organizations, and any other support they could find to free people from whatever chains are binding them to poverty, addiction, violence, mental illness, homelessness, and hopelessness. We spoke for an hour or so as the bands played on, and we discovered we shared a desire to bring hope to people who have lost all hope. John invited me to join them at the following event in Camden New Jersey, and I haven’t missed an event since! I even proposed and coordinated a sixth stop in Norristown PA in October. At each stop, Romans Road, Headstone 118, and other bands volunteered their time and talents, as did several preachers, including Pastor Randy DonGiovanni from Grand Rapids, MI. We also have a core group of Non-Musicians that have served at many, if not all of the events. In the 2015 Save a Life Tour we had stops in Kensington, Camden, Trenton, Manhattan, Reading, and Norristown. Several thousand free meals were provided. Three to Four Bands played at each stop, from Contemporary Christian, to Rock and Rap, even some Gospel music. Many community organizations and churches partnered with us along the way, and the people received prayer, clothing, bibles, and Hope at every stop! All of this was provided completely free of charge to all who would come, and none of the performers or other workers ever received any payment for their work, this is a purely volunteer organization at this point, hoping to add more stops each year, and bring more hope to the inner-city lost.
I just would like to tell you one story. I met thousands of people with absolutely no hope last summer, I prayed with as many as I could, but Frank stands out in my mind. While we were in Reading PA, Cooking and serving, the bands were playing, and this car pulls in the lot. A man gets out, and walks over and has a seat, for several hours he sat and listened, had a bite to eat. We all saw him, keeping to himself, listening to the music. As the preacher spoke, we could see him nod his head, and as the alter call went out he stood and joined us at the cross! After the alter call, we always speak to everyone who came up, and as we spoke with Frank he told us this story…
He had been having trouble with alcohol and drugs for years, he hadn’t worked in a while, was broke, hadn’t seen or spoken to his son in years, and this morning his family kicked him out of his home. He had hit rock bottom. As tears rolled down his cheeks, Frank told us that he was driving down that street on his way to the bridge we could see in the distance. His intention was to drive to that bridge, park his car, and jump to his death. He had lost it all, and was ready to give up. Then he heard our music. He decided to stop to see what was going on, the music lifted his spirits, the message gave him hope, and he was saved!! We formed a circle around Frank, arm in arm, holding him in our arms, lifting him to God in Prayer, we were at war with the demons holding Frank down, we would not give up, we sought God’s Mercy and Grace for this beautiful child of God, and it poured out! As our prayers ended, franks phone rang in his pocket, as he answered his tears turned to all out sobs. It was his estranged son, he was at the family home, and he wanted his dad to come home!
Now I have seen healings, I have seen people come to God, I have seen miracles, and answered prayers. But I tell you, seeing God’s Grace poured out on a man so lost, so ready to give up, at his lowest moment. To see the hand of God reach down and say today is not your day, and pull a man from his despair is such a beautiful, glorious thing.
This is what Save a Life Tour is all about. This is why we are led to this ministry. We formed the Coalition to Save Lives the following week, and began the process to incorporate, and become a Non-Profit organization. We are now incorporated, and an official Public Charity under US tax code section 501(c)(3). Our intention is to continue the Save a Life Tour, and expand it to more cities, and more services each year. We are looking to build partnerships with like-minded churches and organizations in order to build each event into a life altering moment in people’s lives.
The Tour in 2015 was funded by some donations, and a lot of personal sacrifice from the bands and the people involved. The food, the travel, fuel, equipment, bibles etc. were all provided through external donations, our personal funds, and the Grace of God.
As we step out this year, with stops already scheduled in Virginia, Kensington, Reading, Chester, Norristown, even Detroit, we are blessed to have been asked to so many cities, yet are in need of help to make this all happen. We do not rent stadiums or auditoriums, we set up in fields and parking lots, we do not have light shows, or gigantic sound systems. We deliver hope.
We are expecting this year’s tour to cost us in excess of twenty thousand dollars, our first two tour stops in South Boston, and Brookneal Virginia on April 9th and 10th.
I ask you to please consider partnering with us to bring these inner-city areas the Save a Life Tour. Through becoming monthly benefactor, or by giving one-time donation, you can help us provide food, bibles, music, and hope to people who may be on their way to the bridge, may be at their very bottom. As stated above, all donations are 100% utilized to conduct the events, truck rental, food and drink, bibles, promotional literature, and supplies. Please help us spread the Gospel of Hope this year and beyond.
Your donations can be through our webpage www.coalitiontosavelives.org , by check written to Romans Road Ministry sent attention John Simons 1103 Boone Ave Roslyn, PA 19001, or in person at any of our events. See our Webpage, or Facebook page for upcoming events and locations. Thank you in advance for your support!
Thank You and God Bless You,
Coalition to Save Lives