Youth pastors walk for children of divorce
By Nathan Hardin
After his mother’s 2007 extramarital affair, Travis Cordial said he didn’t know who he could trust.
Now, as a youth pastor at World Hope Worship Center, Cordial is doing what he can to raise awareness for children of divorced parents.
Cordial, and fellow youth pastor Paul Silvas, are walking 115 miles from their church in Salisbury to King and back, as part of Cordial’s organization, This Is Our Shout Out.
According to Cordial, the journey, called A Walk for Voices, will hopefully raise awareness for the more than 1 million children affected by divorce every year. Cordial said he chose the length because it breaks down to 115 affected children every hour.
Silvas said he’s supported Cordial in his efforts because of the lack of resources available to children affected by divorce.
“There aren’t many organizations out there that focus on the kids, most just focus on the parents,” Silvas said. “This organization can restore young kinds lives with the message of the gospel.”
Cordial said he plans to make the walk an annual event and he expects next year’s trek to include more participants.
As the church’s middle school youth pastor, Cordial said his parents’ divorce is the motivation for helping future generations.
“I felt like, ‘If I can’t trust my mom, who can I trust?’” Cordial asked.
Cordial said his relationship with his mom has improved, but that it’s still a part of who he is.
“I had a lot of hate and anger built up,” Cordial said. “I felt like I had to be strong for my brother and sister.”
The two will walk about 30 miles each day for four days until they arrive back at the church on Wednesday for a youth service.
Silvas said divorce is a problem everywhere and he hopes the walk will help spread the message to those outside the church.
“I hate to say it, but we need to raise funds to keep doing what we’re doing,” Silvas said. “This is not for profit. I’m just his big brother. This is his dream, his passion.”
Silvas also said, despite a youth program of about 50 kids, that most youths don’t come to church and don’t have the opportunity to receive additional support.
“It’s so appealing to people outside of the church,” Silvas said. “We hope to get the message out to those that aren’t in church, cause most kids don’t come to church anymore.”