Why I Love Serving with ARM

About 2 weeks ago I (Joe) got to hang out with nearly 1000 students at the Meltdown Retreat in Panama City Beach, FL! It was an awesome weekend; God was working in so many students’ lives in so many ways. I had a lot of fun catching up with several churches who have served with youth mission camp before and some coming to serve for the first time!

I was especially excited to run into our friends from Trinity UMC Ft. Walton Beach, FL. I asked if they would share a little bit about why they love serving with ARM and why you will too. Check out what they said!

There’s still time to join us for our 20th Anniversary re-union summer at youth mission camp 2018! Check out www.arm-al.org/missioncamp to find your team’s dates, get more details, and register online. We can’t wait to see how God continues to work in and through our mission teams!

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More Time To Apply for Summer Mission Internships

GREAT NEWS: You now have until March 1st 2018 to submit your application to join our summer ministry team! This is your opportunity to grow as a follower of Jesus and servant leader like never before.

Don’t miss your chance to devote your summer to practicing compassion, hospitality, and Christlike, sacrificial service as you extend Christ’s love every day – with home repair families, with day camp children, with middle/high school student mission teams, and with your ministry team. You’ll be living in Christian community, making disciples, seeking God’s kingdom, and being challenged to trust God in every situation. You’ll do it all as a construction construction, or as a children’s day camp counselor, or maybe as a mission camp site leader!

March 1st is just a few weeks away so don’t wait any longer! Contact Joe at joe@arm-al.org or 334.501-4276 x100 today with any questions or concerns you may have about joining our team.

Ready to apply!? Click here for the direct link to our online application or check out www.arm-al.org/summerstaff to find out details like internship dates, intern housing, ministry profiles for each position, and more!

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United in God’s Purpose: Keeping the Dream Alive

“Everybody can be great… because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.” -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The 2018 MLK Weekend of Service kicked off with an amazing community-worship service at Tuskegee United Methodist Church. The church was filled with love as people arrived to worship God together and commemorate the life and legacy of Dr. King. The power-packed worship service included musical selections from many groups and soloists such as: the Auburn UMC Celebration Singers, Coach Jerome Temple, who is a music teacher at George Washington Carver Elementary, Rose Washington, Anin Hunt, and a praise dance by Praise Nation Dance Team of Cuba, AL.
The Word was brought forth by Rev. Dwayne Watson of Praise Nation Worship Center (Cuba, AL) who preached on the subject of “Keeping God’s Purpose in Our Unity” (Genesis 11), ending his sermon with a portion of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.
In addition to an awesome word and phenomenal singing, our worship included a call-and-resposne litany led by the Tuskegee Wesley Foundation, Community Prayers led by Joe Davis, and a beautiful benediction that involved the entire congregation singing “This Little Light of Mine” while holding candles in the air.
We appreciate everyone who helped make the community-wide worship a success – Rev. Elizabeth Whatley of Tuskegee UMC, all our performers, PraiseNation Worship Center, and Grace UMC of Auburn which provided refreshments after the service!
In addition to an incredible community-wide worship service, we also had a day of service that involved home repair, a street cleanup project, food pantry organization, and a children’s event. The morning began with over 120 volunteers gathering at Washington Chapel AME Church in Tuskegee for breakfast and registration.
From there, volunteers went to their sites to begin serving throughout Macon and Lee counties. We’re so thankful for all the teams that served: Auburn First Presbyterian Church, ARM@AU, Trinity Lutheran Church, Tuskegee Chapter of Omega Tau Sigma, Tuskegee Veterinary students, Liberty UMC (Notasulga), Auburn Wesley, Tuskegee Wesley, Auburn Community Church, Auburn UMC College Ministry, Tuskegee Construction Science students, Auburn Chapter of Association of General Contractors, Auburn-Opelika SURJ, and Auburn Chapter of Alpha Sigma Phi.
The volunteers had a great time serving and repairing homes. Kaylee McCutcheon, president of ARM@AU says, “This MLK Day has meant the most for me out of all my past MLK experiences. The opportunity to be in the actual situations that Dr. King spoke about and embrace the neighbors in our community by working side by side truly made it feel like I was acting on the principles he fought for. Serving in this way made it all come alive.” Kaylee, along with other members of  ARM@AU continued repairs at Ms. Sanford’s home.
Josh Loveland, who served with the Auburn chapter of Associated General Contractors with Ms. Smith of Creek Stand says, “I was overjoyed to spend time with Ms. Smith and work together with Drew and his crew. What a great bunch and guys and girls to work with. They are wonderfully kind folks with compassionate souls, and it was beautiful to see what we could accomplish together in a day.
 In addition to home repairs, there was also an MLK children’s event which included a Bible lesson by Rev. Audrey Rodgers and the Tuskegee Wesley Foundation and a lesson on Dr. King by Ms. McIntosh.
Thank you to all our corporate sponsors:
  • Carter and Carter Construction of Auburn
  • C&C Construction of Notasulga
  • Quail Hollow Gardens of Notasulga
  • Alabama Steel Supply of Montgomery
  • Sabel Steel of Montgomery
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Holy Experiments at Youth Mission Camp

In the summer of 2018, we’ll welcome teams of middle and high school students to our 20th anniversary youth mission camp and growing older means trying new things, right? ARM has always been about holy, kingdom-inspired experiments. We like to ask, “What if…?” and seeing where God leads us. As we prepare for another summer of youth mission camp, we’re exploring some exciting new approaches to how we invest in the middle and high school students who extend Christ’s love with us!

In the past, ARM has always developed a scripturally-based theme: “Fools for Christ”, “Seeking Simplicity”, and “Shalom beyond your Home” to name a few recent themes. Our summer mission interns create morning and lunch devotions around our theme as well as nightly programs that are a blend of retreat-style worship and interactive workshops. One night usually focused on the theme scripture passage, another night explored how the theme relates to our understanding of and response to poverty, and the final night incorporated the theme into a celebration of communion. It’s been a great model that has made space for God to work in the lives of our interns and mission teams in powerful ways.

Check dates for your team at youth mission camp 2018

So what’s changing? And what’s staying the same? What won’t change is our commitment to teaching scripturally and theologically sound principles that lead our teams deeper into loving God and neighbor. We also will stay committed to poverty education so that our teams leave ARM with a better understanding of what poverty is so that they can respond in more Christlike-ways to those living in poverty around them. What’s also not changing of course is the way we extend Christ’s love through our home repair and children’s day camp ministries.

What we’d like to explore is doing more to equip our teams to be in ministry back home and for the rest of their lives! We really want mission to be more than a trip because we know that service is a lifestyle for followers of Jesus. And, no matter what career or vocation you choose when you “grow up,” we can all seek God’s kingdom on earth as it in is heaven – from our homes, businesses, churches, neighborhoods and more!

We also know that students have amazing leadership potential that often goes untapped. That’s why we started LeadUp! – an annual weekend retreat for high school juniors and seniors that is all about identifying students’ passions for God’s coming kingdom and walking them through the steps of putting their ideas into action. (LeadUp! 2018 registration begins today at www.arm-al.org/leadup). We’d like our youth mission camp to do something similar but also be suitable for younger students.

$290 per person with housing, meals, construction materials, and a tshirt included

We’re exploring how to incorporate principles of leadership development, vocational discernment, and community development in creative, practical ways that your team can take home and continue developing. Our nightly gatherings and devotions may look different, but we’re excited to see how new leaders, new missionaries, will be created and nurtured in the process!

So, what if… what if your team of middle and high school students serves with ARM this summer and comes home with a mission plan for your community? Or with a bigger understanding of how every gift and talent they have can be dedicated to God’s kingdom? Or with a new way to connect the assets of their community with its needs?

These are all just possibilities we’d like to explore together with you and your students. Some things change, some things keep on staying the same. We hope you’ll join us this summer to restore hope, build dreams, and make sweet homes for Alabama.

We need your help to end substandard housing. Come extend the love of Christ with us!

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“A” Wonderful Blessing

The A-Team, a group of volunteers from Auburn UMC, has been partnering with ARM for close to 20 years. The team is led by Paul Schrantz who is a member of our board. In October, the A-Team began serving with Mrs. Simmons and completed a wheel chair ramp. The A-Team returned in November to repair floor coverings in several rooms. Paul says, “It is working with wonderful people like Mrs. Simmons and seeing the joy on her face as she utilizes her recently completed ramp. This ramp allowed her to get outside of her house for the first time in months and it is her genuine joy and gratitude for our work that continues to bless the A-Team participants.”

When asked what these repairs meant for her, Mrs. Simmons says, “Words don’t even exist to describe how I feel!” She is so elated and grateful for the repairs. Before the ramp was built, she could not get out of her home without assistance. New floors will mean that she no longer has to walk barefoot in her home to avoid falls – she can wear her house slippers again! When asked about the A-Team, Mrs. Simmons said, “God puts people in our path to let us know He is real.” What a blessing it is to extend Christ’s love with Mrs. Simmons! We are so thankful for the compassionate service of our volunteers like the A-Team. If your church is interested in serving like the A-Team, contact Joe at 334.501-4276 or joe@arm-al.org.

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