The Matrix Center of New Vision United Methodist Church in Florence is more than a student center. It is designed to be a launching point for young people, bringing about a change in their lives and their community. The grand opening of The Matrix Center is set for Feb. 3, 2012.
The Matrix Center developed as a way of addressing the best way to disciple young people today. Although, many people in youth ministry use youth talks as a primary teaching strategy, research has been shown that lecturing isn’t effectively engaging students to learn and create life-change. So New Vision UMC’s student pastor Nathan Alred is hoping to change the lives of students through an atmosphere more relative to their generation.
Alred says, “God is calling us all to be changed and become the change in our circle of influences. Young people in this program abandon the status quo and surrender their lives to change others.”
On its Facebook page, The Matrix Center is explained as “the Christian Youth hangout with live Bands, Relevant Messages, Full Service Cafe and Game room.”
The Worship area of the Student Center seats 300 and is equipped with state of the art lighting, sound, and 4D effects (snow, rain, scent machines, fog machines, etc). These effects are used when life changing dramas are performed and when the students put on productions. Last December, students of the Matrix Student Ministry put on their first production, “VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular” and will be putting on “EASTER IN 4D” this spring.
The center also houses a full service café and lounge that seats 75 and includes items that range in price from a dollar to three dollars.
Throughout the week there are activities and programs with a goal of life-change for young people.
Every Wednesday night, the café and retro arcade open at 6 p.m. for 6th-12th graders. Worship & Word starts at 6:30 in the worship area with a house band, drama/stomp team, and a relevant message creating a personal worshipping experience.
On Friday evenings from 7 to 11 p.m. ClubMatrix will be open to 6th to 12th graders and will have a $1 cover charge. ClubMatrix features live DJs, music, a relevant word and the gaming center and café open.
On Sundays, Matrix Small Groups for 7th-12th graders meet at 10 a.m. on the second level of the Matrix Center with teaching linked with the word of God.
There are also programs that intentionally grow student leaders. THE CREW, a program for 6th – 12th graders, trains and equips students to emerge as leaders. SOUL SCHOOL, a program for college students, trains and equips those who want to intern within The Matrix Center.
That Matrix Center also hosts special events. On Saturday, February 18, 2012, The Matrix Center will be hosting “THE PUR1TY CODE”, a youth conference with worship, breakout sessions, and teachings centered around purity and covenant relationships with God and each other.
For more information, visit www.thematrixcenter.org.