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April 1-Synod of Southern California and Hawaii

Mission Trip gives Students Insights about Poverty and Homelessness

April 1, 2016

In July 44 high school students and nine leaders headed to Denver, Colorado, for a weeklong mission trip with the aid of a $15,000 grant from the synod. They came from seven churches spread across two of the synod’s presbyteries—San Gabriel and Riverside. The trip was planned in conjunction with the Mennonite Church organization DOOR (Discovering Opportunities for Outreach and Reflection). Each day teams of four students plus an adult leader worked at a different site. Sites included a food bank, a community garden, a tutoring program for inner-city children, a soup kitchen and a shelter that provides services to the homeless.

Through daily devotions the students were pushed to think deeply about poverty and homelessness and ways in which they might help others. The groups learned about and talked a lot about privilege and power—what it is, how they might have it and how they might use it for good. On the last night they traveled into the local mountains to reflect on their time together. They considered questions such as: Where did we have new awareness? Where were we challenged? What was new for us? What are we going to do differently when we go home? The students had many insights after their varied work experiences. They were amazed at the different sites they visited and formulated action plans to actually make a difference in their communities after returning home.

Fried Wilson

Let us join in prayer for:

Synod Staff

Doska Ross, Synod Executive and Stated Clerk
David Suarez, Director of Finance
Fried Wilson, Office Manager
Rev. Leon Fanniel, Racial Ethnic Pastoral Leadership Coordinator

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff

Aqueelah Ligonde, PMA
Sara Lisherness, PMA
Elizabeth Little, PMA

Let us pray

Gracious and loving God, help us truly to see your children who need our help: the poor, the refugees, the hungry, the homeless and all others who need a helping hand. And once we see and understand, help us to meet those needs.  Amen.

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