"I wish everyone could visit ‘Kevinland,' " says Kevin Zanders, the youth pastor at the Salvation Army's church (corps) in the West Park section of Cleveland.Zanders
explains, "Kevinland is a happy place where everything is fun.Roller coasters are everywhere.The Cleveland Indians go to the World Series every year with me as their manager/player.There are vendors on every corner passing out tacos, corn dogs, and pizza."
Many of Zanders'
ministry ideas come from the Kevinland of his
was working on an Army canteen in inner- city Cleveland one Sunday when a man started running alongside, shouting for the canteen to stop.
"I slipped into Kevinland," says Zanders
."From my childhood, I remembered how the sound and sight of the ice cream man would bring children running from all corners of the neighborhood.Then I began to imagine how that concept could be used to draw children to Jesus."
shared his idea with West Park's pastors, Majors Sherrylyn and Paul Moore, they were ecstatic.
"We were confident this was God-willed and we offered any support Kevin
would need to make this happen," says Paul Moore.
"We decorated the canteen to look like an ice cream truck," says Zanders
"There were more kids than I ever thought we could fit in the chapel," says Zanders
.Many kids came with their parents and have been attending church and Sunday school ever since.
"We were amazed, but we should not have been," Zanders
says."God is always in control."
After all, He's
the one who created all things-including Kevinland.
Playing on at Age 88