Pratt begins career pursuit early as youth pastor and group mentor

Published 9:59 pm Friday, July 31, 2009

Why wait until after college to begin pursuing your life goal? For Zach Pratt, a Demopolis native and undergraduate at Troy University, this question holds a special significance.

“My main goal in life is to bring glory to God by making much of Christ through the gifts and passions he has created me with,” Pratt said.

By serving as a youth group mentor at Bush Memorial Baptist Church in Troy and a member of the leadership team for Troy’s Baptist Campus Ministries (BCM), Pratt is doing just that.

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Pratt’s involvement with the BCM spans his entire career at Troy. Last year, Pratt’s leadership emphasis with the organization was on fellowship, and his emphasis this coming year will be discipleship.

“The most rewarding thing [about being on the BCM leadership team] would be encouraging one of my passions — solid fellowship,” he said. “It’s great to be around people who are genuinely concerned and want to love others. Being on the leadership team gives me an opportunity to see and make that happen, to administer and admonish it.”

Pratt will be in charge of putting together Bible studies and setting up mentoring opportunities for BCM members in the fall.

“I will be encouraging small groups that study the Bible to experience fellowship outside of a ‘Bible study’ setting,” he said.

Pratt emphasized that being a mentor for others is just as important as being mentored. Because of this belief, he volunteers as a youth group leader for high school students at Bush Memorial Baptist Church in Troy.

“I had been going to church there for a year before I realized I wanted to do something more than just showing up on Sunday,” he said. “It has led to a real opportunity for me to disciple to those young guys.”

Pratt is in a special ministry position because of his closeness in age to the youth he mentors.

“I can see a lot of myself in them,” he said. “From high school to college, I grew up spiritually, mentally and physically. When the seeds are being planted, I can see these guys taking the same steps.”

Pratt recently accompanied the church’s youth group on a mission trip to Copper Hill, Tenn. The group began building a house for a lady who had previously lived in a bus.

“We put up inside and outside walls, primed the outside walls, caulked, put up doors, and just showed love to her,” he said.

A 2007 graduate of Demopolis High School, Pratt attended First United Methodist Church before moving to Troy. He is a communications major and leadership minor hoping to attend seminary after college.