“Inlet Love” and Eternal Impact

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​The year was 1992. The location, Malibu Club in Canada. Katie Hagen was enjoying the summer prior to her senior year at Kentridge High School in Washington State, and the opportunity to serve on work crew was a dream come true. Meanwhile, Frank Sherman was a recent high school graduate who had traveled across the country from North Carolina to also serve on work crew at the iconic Young Life property situated on the Princess Louisa Inlet. Unbeknownst to both of these young people, their time of service and growth at Malibu would also be the beginning of a relationship that would go on to impact the entirety of their lives and the lives of many others.

It wasn’t until the Christmas of 1993 that Frank and Katie officially began their long-distance dating relationship. By then, Katie was a freshman in college at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington, while Frank was deep in his college studies at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. During her college years, Katie continued to lead and team-lead for Young Life as a volunteer in Ferndale, Washington. Following graduation, Frank and Katie were wed on August 7, 1999. During the next 14 years, Frank and Katie focused on completing their master’s studies, beginning their teaching careers and growing their family. Having moved to Beaufort, North Carolina, the Sherman’s noticed that there was an absence of Young Life in the area, so in 2013, they took it upon themselves to form a committee to get Young Life started in their county. As alumni, teachers and parents, Frank and Katie knew the need and the potential impact of having Young Life in their community. Based on their vision and the efforts of many other community members, Crystal Coast Young Life was born. This past November, the area hosted its fifth annual fundraising banquet! Today, Crystal Coast is an active, growing area with a staff associate and a student staff person. In Katie’s words, “Our area is growing strong and we couldn't be more pleased with how God has worked in our community. I serve as the committee chair, and Frank served as a leader until last spring.”Young Shermans Edited.jpg

According to Katie, “In 2015, I took three girls from my area to Young Life’s Carolina Point as a way to start exposing some high school friends to Young Life. It had been 19 years since I’d last been to a Young Life camp, and I didn’t know quite what to expect! I had promised these unsuspecting girls the best week of their lives, and was hopeful in prayer that the experience would live up to the expectation I had set. As soon as we arrived at Carolina Point, I knew that God had brought us there in His ever-perfect timing. The best way to describe it was like ‘coming home.’ God has encouraged us each step of the way while starting up our area and I continued to hear his voice saying, ‘This is the way ... walk in it.’ The girls had the best week of their lives, and one of them became a senior leader while in high school and continues to lead in her college town. Four years later, in the summer of 2019, we had 40 high school friends and leaders go to summer camp at Sharptop Cove. God has blessed us greatly!” 
Katie and Girls Edited.jpgHowever, this was not the only, or last Young Life camp that Katie and Frank would attend. In the summer of 2017, Frank and Katie loaded up their minivan and took their three beautiful daughters cross-county, including a week-long family camp experience at Young Life’s Trail West Lodge in Colorado. Then, in 2019, 27 years after they met on work crew, Katie and Frank returned to Malibu as adult guests. In Katie’s words, “Being at Malibu this past summer was very special for us. It was the first time we had been back to Malibu together since work crew in 1992. It was great to see how the new buildings enhanced camp, yet the feel of camp is still as beautiful and welcoming as ever.”
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Frank and Katie Sherman are a great example of the sometimes-experienced existence of “inlet 
love” at Malibu, and the ongoing, eternal impact that God can have through those that avail themselves to His purposes. From early years of serving on work crew, the formative years as area volunteers, to mature years of starting and growing an area, Katie and Frank, we are grateful for your ongoing service and the way that your choices have impacted and inspired many!