This article appears in the Spring 2023 issue of the FCA Donor Publication. The FCA publication is a gift from our FCA staff to all donors giving $50 or more annually. For more information about giving, visit here.
1956 - First FCA Camp
FCA’s first camp in 1956 has been called by many the most important event in FCA’s history. From Estes Park, Colorado, Branch Rickey gave the keynote message calling 256 campers to be bold witnesses for Christ and the church. Out of that camp grew the network of citywide programs, chapters, Huddles and all the rest that made FCA national in scope.
1966 - Huddle Ministry
In January 1966, FCA’s Huddle ministry was established as groups of male athletes gathered to study God’s Word together and pray.
With the 1973 introduction of Title IX–legislation requiring all federally funded schools to provide equal opportunity for women in sports–the FCA Board of Trustees recognized a need to reach out to a growing population of female athletes. FCA hosted two national women’s camps and in 1975, the first all-girls’ Huddles became official.
1977 - Sport-Specific Ministry
In January 1977, the national golf ministry became FCA’s first sports-specific ministry. In 1989, FCA Lacrosse hosted its first FCA Camp. Over the next several decades, more sport-specific ministries would take off. Baseball in 2003. Endurance ministry 2005. Cheerleading in 2006. Hockey in 2008. This all planted the seeds for sport-specific ministry through FCA Sports Clubs and Leagues.
1991 - One Way 2 Play-Drug Free!
In 1991, FCA kicked off its drug-free program that encouraged athletes to stay off drugs. The campaign launched videos, garnered support in the schools, and attracted the attention and support of both professional athletes and political figures.
Mid-1990s - Growth
By the mid-1990s, FCA Camp attendance began to exceed 10,000 and FCA Huddle attendance topped 5,000. Ten years later by the mid-2000s, FCA was seeing 20,000 camp attendance and by 2007, FCA began reaching at least 2 million people.
2002 - Fields of Faith
The first Fields of Faith event took place on a field in Oklahoma. By 2004, the student-led event gathering athletes for prayer, worship and testimonies had grown to reach more than 6,000. By 2006, the event had gone nationwide and soon, worldwide.
2003 - Sports New Testament
FCA has always been passionate about distributing biblical resources for discipleship. The Bible ministry kicked off in 1956, and over the years, the ministry has published thousands of devotionals, books and Bible studies. Today, we distribute close to 200,000 Bibles each year and even more resources. Every athlete who attends FCA Camp gets a Bible.
2013 - FCA International
The international language of sport took FCA beyond the U.S. borders so we could reach athletes in every culture, language and community. Today, FCA ministers in 114 countries and offers biblical resources in multiple languages.
2018 - E3 Discipleship Journey
2022 - FCA Sports
FCA synthesized and launched the E3 discipleship journey to outline how to share the Christ and its methods for ministry. Part of this journey included launching resources like The FOUR, The CORE and YouVersion Bible reading plans.
FCA introduced its plan to take ministry into every generation: FCA Sports. Club and League sports have grown just as popular as on-campus sports and FCA continues to find ways to reach every coach and athlete. Internationally, club sports are how many connect.
Today - Dreaming Big
FCA sees God-sized opportunities before us. We hope you'll join us as we continue to reach every generation for Christ.
See more stories about how God has used FCA to reach athletes throughout the years at timeline.fca.org