Tonight, Christian high school students in Michigan will be attending a prom without the typical pressures and expectations that come with such an event. Home school and Christian school students will be gathering at the Lighthouse Faith Center in Ironwood for an evening of fine dining, dancing, music, and even a ceremony crowning a king and queen. The event is being sponsored by local Christian churches and community organizations and has been themed "The Night."
Organizer Melissa DeCarlo says unlike most high school proms, students are not encouraged to bring a date but rather place their focus on God.
"All of our music is going to be Christian music," she explains. "The theme for the prom actually comes out of Isaiah 26:9 -- the beginning part being 'With my soul have I desired Thee in the night' -- 'Thee' referring to God and striving for righteousness. We went ahead with the 'night' theme [for the prom] ... but everything is God-centered."
DeCarlo says this prom will be unlike most high school proms.
"In the typical prom, you have to have a date. With this one, we recommend no dating -- just come. And there are a few people who wanted to come as a couple, and that's fine, too. But we really wanted to encourage kids that [they] don't have to have a date to go to a prom. Let's just get together for a nice formal evening."
According to DeCarlo, students attending the event are aware they must come sober, straight, and [recognizing that] inappropriate physical contact is not allowed. The students are not planning the typical post-prom party either. She says some intend to go to a local park and skateboard in their formal wear.
This whole concept is certainly a departure from the norm for most high school proms, where booze and drugs reign, and intoxicated guys and girls, their inhibitions lowered by the alcohol, often get into trouble on the sexual front.