After Tropical Storm Cindy moved on, we enjoyed a great – DRY! – week of extending the love of Christ to end substandard housing in rural Alabama! It’s hard to believe but this week marks the halfway point for youth mission camp 2017… time flies when you’re serving others!
In Tuskegee, we were excited to welcome new friends from Bellview UMC of Pensacola, FL. Their team had 2 home repair crews – one serving with Ms. Cowan in Shorter and another with Ms. Reid in Notasulga. This was our first time to serve with Bellview and we look forward to many more opportunities to partner in ministry!
We also welcomed back our friends from Church at Cahaba Bend of Helena, AL. This team had 1 home repair crew and a day camp crew. The home repair crew served with Ms. Turk in Notasulga – making great progress on her roof repairs! The day camp crew brought our #cogpow day camp theme to life through Bible stories, music, and crafts. Plus, they got to help with Camp iCare, a 1 week camp developed by Auburn University that’s all about teaching leadership, financial literacy, and making a positive impact in your community! This was our 2nd summer to bring Camp iCare to Sonshine Day Camp and we’re so thankful for this program.
Every week has something unique… this week it was puppies 🙂 Two puppies were dropped off at the church. Our staff cared for them throughout the week. Thankfully, they found a new home with Jackie Doss, our LeadUP summer intern from Perdido Bay UMC serving with us throughout Week 4 in Tuskegee. Thanks Jackie!
In Sumter County, we had a great week serving with our friends from First UMC Montgomery! This was the team’s first time serving at youth mission camp with us, but we have hosted teams for service days in Tuskegee in the past. Regardless, this team served well with our families and day camp kids. On the home repair side, Ms. Johnson of Emelle and Ms. Eades of Boyd were blessed to host these volunteers. The day camp crew showed Christ’s love throughout the week with our Sonshine day campers.
Again, every week is unique… A storm blew through on Wednesday evening just as we had began to cook dinner. As you might guess, the power went out and so did our ovens. Our Sumter County teams are hosted in York, AL, where there is only one option for fast food – Church’s Chicken. Thankfully, it was chicken finger night at ARM and Church’s was still open for cash purchases only. Joe Davis, a native of York and ARM’s Director of Ministry Operations, actually bought ALL the chicken at Church’s – a lifetime achievement for sure – in order to keep our team well fed! The power was restored just as dinner was served, and our Extend Night worship service brought a great discussion about how we understand the “hidden rules” among poverty, middle, and wealth classes.