MISSION TRIP 2017
The Mission Church of the Nazarene
Who we are:
We are an urban church plant, discovering what it means to be the kingdom of God in our neighborhood.
We are an intergenerational church, because we believe that all ages benefit from listening to and learning from one another.
We are an ethnically diverse church, because we believe our church should reflect the neighborhood, but also the mosaic of the kingdom of God. We seek racial justice, and wade into deep conversations about how we can encourage each other to grow.
We are a new thing in an old space. Our church building is over 70 years old, but our church has only been in existence for 2 years. We are imagining what it looks like to restore and redeem a space, a fitting metaphor as we seek to restore and redeem the community around us.
What you will be doing:
Help us continue the restoration of our space through various projects, -installing light fixtures in our basement space -tearing down old ceilings -painting -cleaning and organizing
Help us continue to connect with our neighborhood by -helping us prepare our church community garden for spring planting -help us organize our little free library -help us build a second (more kid accessible) little free library -help us host a family game night for our church neighbors -help us be a visible example of Jesus to the neighborhood
Help us continue to connect with ongoing works of Justice throughout the world by -visiting our partner ministry “free the girls” and learning about the ongoing fight against human trafficking here and abroad, and volunteering in that ministry for a few hours.
Learn more about Free the Girls: http://freethegirls.org/about/
What you will be learning
Theology of place- why it is important to serve, live, and worship with neighbors
How to have conversations about racial reconciliation and justice
What does incarnational ministry look like
What role you can play in larger justice issues around the world
And much more that can not be planned
More can be learned about the ministry Rev. Robbie and The Mission Church by following her blog! http://hammondmissionchurch.blogspot.com
When: May 27 - June 2, 2017
Where: Hammond, IN (just outside Chicago!)
Past Spring Break Mission Trips
One of the highlights of each year is the Spring Break Mission Trip we take each year. Student leadership helps decide where we will go serve, assists in planning the trip, and then we set off to find that God does something amazing wherever we go and serve. Here are some more details of each of our trips from the last few years.
Spring Break 2016
San Antonio, TX Spring Break 2014
Acuña, Mexico Spring Break 2015
PSF spent another incredible week in Leon with El Ayudante! Pictured above is Sam Wright braving the extreme wind(it was kind of dangerous!) on top of Cerro Negro, a volcano near Leon.
During our time with El Ayudante we got to do a plethora of different things. The large majority of the trip was dedicated to spending time with and working for children in the Leon area. We painted a school and did VBS at several more.
We also got to spend a lot of time with the children at El Ayudante! Some of us, and by some I mean all, might have been schooled in soccer daily.
Leon, Nicaragua is definitely a place for PSF.
New Casa for Monsivais Family
After 2 days of driving, our team of met Casas por Cristo, Nickolas Wille, to cross over the border into Acuna, Mexico. We picked up all the tools we would need for the week, and headed to the site where we would meet Uriel (mom) Angel, Eduin, and Luis (sons). Azusena (dad) was working that first day driving a taxi. They had a plot of land there, and our first task was to find out where the family wanted us to put the house using broken Spanish and lots of pointing. We set out to build frames for the concrete slab foundation, then level the frame over uneven ground through digging, measurements, and nailing things down to stakes. A few hours later a concrete truck arrived to pour while we spread and leveled as fast as possible. More measuring, more leveling, scraping, spreading, leveling, praying, leveling, smoothing, praying, and finally calling it good--for the moment. Meanwhile, Jeremy and Lauren, had been furiously cutting lumber into the needed lengths while Nik marked off each boards with a line and an "x" to where other boards needed to be nailed in. I think you are getting the drift--there was a lot to be done.
Walls nailed together to be raised and put in place on day two. The rafters and plywood roof nailed, later to be tar papered and shingled by Sam, Justin, Haley, and Jason. There was blackboard to be nailed onto the walls to later be stretched with chicken wire to apply the stucco on the last day by Taylor, Caleb and the rest of the group. There was insulation to be inserted, electrical which John ran the wiring for, and finally drywall to be installed. I am sure I left out some details, but it was fast-paced build-a-house-cause-a-family-need-it.
While the construction was great, the joy was in knowing that it would be a lasting life-change for the family. We saw a family look on somewhat reserved the first days, that would give way to huge smiles and excited laughter by Thursday night. The family and community shared tamales with our team that night, and then we nailed a plaque to the house together with the family and presented them with the keys to their house. It was a powerful moment. Their lives were changed, as were ours.
PSF spent a week with the DOOR ministry in San Antonio learning about homelessness and disabilities and all the ways the people of San Antonio are working to help those people. We had the opportunity to jump in along side them and help love and care for people who are homeless or disabled. This trip left us all with a very different perspective on those issues and determined to make a difference back home. We were so determined in fact, that our college ministry has shifted gears to do a similar work in Murfreesboro.
León, Nicaragua Spring Break 2013
PSF went once again back to serve the people of Leon, Nicargua with El Ayudante. One of the highlights was going to the Special Needs school of Leon. Some of the children there have mental handicaps, while others are deaf, blind, or are unable to walk. They all taught us more about love. For that morning our minds could think clearly, we all could hear and see and move along with the love God. Our group later moved on, giving out care packages to provide for the needs of 30 families for a 2 week period. Their faith was humbling. It has a way of changing your life.
Spring Break 2011
Our group went into the NC mountains to meet Mrs Ruby who had lived in her house for 45 years, but for the last few years has lived there alone. The house had inches of dust and cat dander and the family believed on keeping everything, junk or not. Trash was just thrown out back, including over 200 old tires that we hauled off. New carpet, new paint, a lot of trips to the dump, and a lot of cleaning, and Mrs. Ruby was much better off. More importantly, she knew she was not forgotten and she knew she was loved and our parntering organization, Neighborlove of Matthew Twenty-Eight continues the outreach to this community.
Spring Break 2010
Spring Break 2012
There is so much needed even at our back door. This would be our first trip with the DOOR Network. This network "is a gateway for encountering the city through the eyes, ears, and heart of God" and is active in 6 urban communities. Our group worked with the Door-Atlanta which opened us to many of the non-profit ministries in Atlanta. From serving the homeless to working in a community garden, our group experienced a little bit of everything.
Our team went back to Nicaragua to work with El Ayudante. The team worked with the young people at the Youth Protection Center, children in local schools and handed out food and care packages in one of the local communities. The highlight of the week was helping build a new house for a family to move into and take care of one of the girls who had been living at El Ayudante that would now get to move in with her Uncle and Aunt.
Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, SD
Spring Break 2007
Spring Break 2009
The PSF team went and helped Good News Partners with a ministry to the homeless in Chicago. The team helped renovate, clean, paint, and organize several apartments to get them ready for people who had been homeless to move into. The team also ate each night with what we first saw as the homeless at the community cafe. By the end of the week we ate there with who we saw to be friends. The team also were able to do some educational programs with local children. It was a great week.
Spring Break 2008
Last Spring Break, a team of 16 headed to León, Nicaragua. We stayed at a beautiful ministry called El Ayudante. On Sunday morning we went to Mass at the oldest Cathedral in Central America afterwards touring downtown León. That afternoon we went back to El Ayudante and met the children from the Youth Protection Center for the first time. These kids had a way of grabbing your heart and making you smile all over. That night we went to an amazing worship at a Pentecostal church. Throughout the week we conducted four Vacation Bible Schools at three different local schools and a Compassion International site. This VBS included games, crafts, and a Bible story. Tuesday night we went back to the Compassion International site and planned to have a youth rally that actually included people of all ages. We ended the rally by having a pizza party. For many, it was the first time they had ever had pizza. It was an eye opening experience of everyone on our team to see that something like pizza that we can take for granted, some people never get to experience. In addition to working with the children in Nicaragua, we also helped with the painting of a new medical clinic for three days. On our last day working in León, we took a life changing trip to the landfill. It was heart breaking to see people looking through trash to find things that they could make use of or to fix and sell to help support their family. But you could see God among the dirt, the flies, and the smells. Through all of this, even though these people had very little they were praising God for what they did have. Although the pastor spoke another language, he spoke with such passion and love for our God and for the people he was speaking to that our group was moved as well. Our translators told us that he was telling them that they are the salt of the earth and have value and great worth. They need to go out and give the world flavor. After we left the landfill we headed to the Pacific Ocean for dinner and some relaxing before leaving the next morning. There are so many stories to tell, but we will stop with this general overview. Needless to say, it was an awesome trip.
Spring Break 2007 was spent in South Dakota at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. We were able to travel around and see the sights like the Badlands and Mount Rushmore as well as seeing the beautiful countryside with prairie dog towns and roaming buffalo. But what really made the week was working with the people on the reservation. We were able to really hear their stories as they shared the pain over having land taken from them and even losing family members in past battles like the one at Wounded Knee. We also saw how the youth live amidst heavy gang concentrations, high alcoholism rates, poverty all around with with little hope of ever getting off the Reservation or feeling like the Reservation can change for the good. Through youth rallies partnering with a local church, going into tutor in local schools, working to improve a family's home, and helping to build a community center that will be a place for future mission teams to come as well as a center for young people to gather at and call their own, our team got to carry a message of hope. Interestingly enough, it's a message that not only stayed there but came back with us. Each year First Presbyterian here in town takes a group back to Pine Ridge and PSFers continue to have the opportunity to go back each summer and perhaps even a Spring Break sometime soon.
Spring Break 2006
A temporary camp was set up by the Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) folks, with mobile pod units for sleeping and a large tent for a dining hall, This would be home base for our team to go out and do hurricane relief work in the aftermath of Katrina. For a week our team went out and heard stories of people surving the surging ocean that washed out their homes and then about the devastation afterwards. We helped one lady out by building a wheel chair ramp up to a trailer door so she could get back in their home. At a second house we heard about sea eels found in their swimming pool after the storm and about a dog who clung to a tree with its paws and somehow survived while the family rode it out downstairs initially with the wind and then on the second floor as the water came in. We began the process of ripping out all of the walls downstairs to get them ready to be treated for mold which would have to be done before the group could move back in from their FEMA trailer. We worked on a third home where we helped trim the doors and windows (with the help of an experienced carpenter), put up and sanded drywall, and then primed and painted the house and had the home ready to move back in by the time we left and gave the family several gift cards to be able to replace some of the furniture and everyday items in the house. Out of appreciation, the family fixed us some seafood gumbo which was incredible and a great way to wrap up the week.