We Partner with our Community to Help our Neighbors in Need

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink,
I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me,
I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’


Report from Kristin Wensel:

In June, I took four teen boys up to Rutland, VT for a week long work-projects mission trip through YouthWorks. YouthWorks provides Christ-centered mission trips for more than 20,000 teenagers and adult leaders in over 45 communities across the U.S. and beyond.  YouthWorks believes that God is already moving around the world, and the best thing we can do is to come alongside local churches and groups and ask how we can help.  During our time in Rutland, we camped out in the basement of a local church as our home base, along with 3 other church youth groups from Maryland and PA.  All told, there were 38 people in Rutland through YouthWorks for the week, with kids ranging from 12 to 18.  


As they were the oldest and strongest on the trip, our boys were assigned the hardest jobs of the week, and they were eager to serve!  


For the first two days, we partnered with the local community volunteers to rebuild a mountain-bike trail in the city-owned Pine Hill Park.  Following the great depression, this park had been neglected  for 80+ years.  In 2003, YouthWorks began partnering with a few local volunteers to build trails, beaches and playgrounds for public use.  Now the 273 acre park is widely used and well maintained.  Our job was to refinish a downhill “S” curve on a popular mountain bike trail.  That involved lots of digging, stump removal, boulder shifting and rock carrying.  The boys joyfully moved large boulders for 2 days, to build a retaining wall for the trail. We built berms, dug drainage ditches, found more rocks than we thought possible in one place and came away tired and happy.  We finished the section we were assigned to, and the boys received many compliments for their hard work!   


Day 3, we were assigned to work with the nearby town recreation department.  The town’s elementary baseball team had won the state semi-finals, and the town was scheduled to host the finals game the next day.  Unfortunately, their only field had been neglected - it was overgrown and in need of love. The boys spent that day ripping out crabgrass from the infield, edging, putting down fresh gravel and re-leveling the field to ready it for play.  The team arrived to practice just as we wrapped up, and were pleasantly surprised to see their newly spiffed up field.


Our final day on site, we spent painting.  We gave the local park picnic tables a fresh coat of paint, and ended the day by re-painting the floor of the 300-year old town hall meeting room.


When we weren’t serving, we were cooking meals for the group, in devotionals, worshiping or spending time getting to know the other kids on the trip.  We had such a good time!   And, though the boys each thought they were going on the trip to serve others, God had something deeply personal prepared for each of them as well.  There were some profound spiritual lessons learned on this trip - ones that I hope will make lasting impressions on them all. 


We are already looking forward to going again next year!