Our first mission trip on behalf of West Heights United Methodist Church was intentionally a short one. The other trips in recent years had been international trips, very long and expensive. West Heights has a history of being mission minded and very generous in terms of food and clothing and meeting local needs and responding to calls for help financially.
Some were feeling the call to be more hands on. So after a couple of years and many conversations, a plan began to form. David Lewis was instrumental in following through with e-mails, phone calls and organizing a trip. Beaver Crossing needed and still needs so much work. I am constantly in awe of how destructive weather can be and how long it takes to recover. Like many weather disasters before, the efforts to rebuild a town takes the entire community and all the help they can get.
Today, we spent only a few hours, but finished up some projects we had begun. The cleaning up of all the trees and brush on one woman’s property took all of yesterday and today. Here are some pictures of that project:
And then we finished painting the hallway and stairway in the 1907 Victorian home. This was a family with six children and a seventh on the way. Not only had they had significant damage from the tornado, their roofers were less than careful and left the roof uncovered and a huge thunderstorm dumped rain into their home.
We then finished cleaning up the church and prepared to head home. To a person, each one of us had sore muscles and were tired. AND we all agreed we were blessed to be able to spend a few days offering ourselves to help others. In the words of our sermon series we were grateful to “#dosomething” and in doing something living out our faith.
A big thanks to: Bob Richards, Norma Ackert, Dave and Terry Glover, Andrew Stover, Rusty Allensworth, Norm Roelfs and David Lewis for their willingness to spend a few days making a difference. We are thankful to Mike and Dorothy Aspegren who are Great Plains UMC Conference site coordinators. They made sure we had everything we needed and helped us get to work sites in Beaver Crossing. A final picture with all of us:
I am sure I speak for all of us that we are
Graced to Serve.