[Editor’s Note: the following report is from Mary Peeple’s presentation to the congregation on the Youth Mission just completed. It was lightly edited for this space]
By Mary Peeples
Five hours after we pulled out of the church parking lot, eight of us piled out of the van to be welcomed by the leader of Hearts of Palm at St Mark’s Episcopal Church, not really knowing what the week would hold, nor knowing the impact we would be making at each outreach we were assigned.
At St. George’s Episcopal Church and Community center, Paul Johnson and Jim Chambers were bested in basketball by 10 and 12 year olds, despite the amount of time they spent perfecting their skills at St. Marks, where we were sleeping in a gymnasium.
Kate Hansen was always enthusiastic about volunteering for a task and set a good example whether it be preparing goods for the people at the Caring Kitchen or leading the clothing haul at the Homeless Coalition. There, Brooklyn Prine proceeded with organizing hundreds of pairs of women’s pants, which by the end of our time at that outreach, got the best of her.
We arrived at New Bethel Baptist Church on Demo Day to help clear out debris and JD enjoyed the part where he got to take a hammer to a wall and totally demolish it.
For fun, some days we ventured over to Jupiter Beach after dinner to just let out some steam, get in the ocean, and enjoy the beautiful beach. The last two days were a road trip that consisted of a nail biting Marlins game in Miami and a scenic drive to Key West where the majority of us picked up some sort of souvenir, however; there was a lack of Key Lime Pie.
Unfortunately, we did not fulfill Molly Stevenson’s wish of visiting Ron Jon Surf Shop, but we do now know every single classic rock song Father Dave Johnson will be referencing in future sermons as it is his favorite genre for driving.
The trip concluded with a beautiful sunset as we rode off from Key West to the mainland and Palm Beach Gardens. Along the way, we had time to reflect on all the good that God infused into the week we experienced.
Thank you to Father Dave and Molly for the numerous Dunkin and Wendy’s stops and for just being awesome chaperones. Finally, thank you to Christ Church for all the support in helping make the mission trip a success.