|2017 New Orleans Mission Team|
Well 2,000 miles, a busted tire, a bad alternator, and plenty of laughter and tears later, we are back from our summer mission trip. It never ceases to amaze me at what a week of service can mean to a group of people. This past week was no exception. We took a group of 37 people, ranging in age from 13 to 50, representing 7 different churches, with students from 5 different schools all the way to New Orleans and back. On paper this may sound like a recipe for a bad reality TV show, but in actuality, one of the biggest blessings of the trip was to see 37 individuals come together to form one team with a common purpose.
I have to admit that I love any opportunity I have to take students out on mission, but summer trips are special to me in that it’s a chance to see our ROC students serving alongside a multi-generational team. Providing ROC students with the opportunity to serve, worship, and learn alongside folks from our supporting churches has been a goal of the ROC staff the past few years. Affording students these experiences allows them to recognize the diversity within the Body of Christ as well as better understand their importance and place within the Church.
Another reason this past week was so special to me was because it was an opportunity for me to see two of my students serving in their official capacity as Interns for Crossroads Missions. Aerin Hemsath (ROC’s incoming President) and Sara Schenkelberg (a former student of mine from Middleport) have both been serving in New Orleans since late May this year. Aerin has carved out some time to share about her experiences this summer with us in the attached Student Update. Make sure you check that out.
|Dodger with Crossroads Interns|
Aerin Hemsath (left) and
Sara Schenkelberg (right)
I’m not sure if it was the mission trip, ROC students serving all over the country this summer, or maybe just the excitement that comes with a new academic year fast approaching, but I truly believe that God has big things in store for the ministry of ROC this fall. There is a “buzz” of excitement within the group for the upcoming year that is contagious. God is definitely on the move in the lives of those within our community as well as in the lives of the people that we have come in contact with lately. I can tell you that I’m not ordinarily an overly emotional person, but hearing stories last week of the good that God was working in the lives of our mission team moved me to tears multiple times.
I am so incredibly thankful for the many rich bonds and friendships that we share with supporters and partners just like you, which are making an eternal impact in the lives of our students. Thank you once again for many prayers lifted up on our behalf and for the continued faithful partnership with our community. I appreciate each one of you more than you will ever know.
PS Check out the video from our week in New Orleans in the link below.