SEC ’09: Ziafat, Sanctus Real, Dutton

This year’s SBTC Student Evangelism Conference (SEC) at the Dallas Convention Center Aug. 7-8 will feature speakers Afshin Ziafat and Ed Newton and music from Sanctus Real, Brandon Heath and Dutton.

“The theme ‘Message Received, Message Sent’ illustrates what we hope to achieve with the Student Evangelism Conference this year,” said SBTC Student Evangelism Associate Jared McIntire. “We hope students will receive the message and in turn send out the gospel with their lives and witness.”

Ziafat and Newton are the right speakers to communicate that vision, McIntire said.

“Both of these guys have incredible life stories of God’s grace and serve as some of the best student communicators in the United States. They will challenge the lost to be saved and the believer to share his or her faith. On top of having musical artists Brandon Heath and Sanctus Real, we are fortunate to have one of the next up and coming worship bands, Dutton. These guys are talented, humble, and love students.”

Raised as a Muslim in Houston by immigrants from Iran, Ziafat came to Christ through the witness of friends in high school and a Bible given him when he was a boy by a Christian tutor. He dug the Bible out of a closet when he was challenged to read it by some high school friends.

Newton was raised as the only child of deaf parents, and became a Christian in high school after a series of hardships. A former church student minister and outreach pastor, Newton serves as staff evangelist at Faith Baptist Church in Bartlett, Tenn.

For those unfamiliar with the annual SEC, McIntire said the event is one where students, student ministers, and student volunteers can find spiritual refreshment and revitalization to be “effective witnesses in the spheres of influence where God has placed them.”

Conference registration begins at 2 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 7, with doors opening at 5:45 p.m. and session one beginning at 6 p.m. and ending at 10 p.m.

Doors open on Sat., Aug. 8 at 8:15 a.m. with the session beginning at 9 a.m. and running until noon.

Registration as a group is encouraged by visiting, where additional information on area hotels and restaurants is available. Conference cost is $30 per person or $35 at the door.

The Dallas Convention Center is at 650 S. Griffin St., Dallas (75202-5098).

As usual, there is a Six Flags special rate available for conference attendees. Park tickets are available at the discounted rate of $25.50 per person (plus fees and tax) online at Enter the promo code SBTC09. There will also be a Six Flags booth with tickets for sale at the SEC.

McIntire added: “Through the music and speakers I hope unbelieving students will experience the grace of God and trust Christ as their Savior and Lord. I pray teenagers who have made mistakes and feel unworthy hear that God does love them despite their faults. I hope the stubborn and rebellious students will be humbled and broken by the cross of Jesus. I look forward to seeing and hearing how God shows up.”

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