Youth Group Mission Trip Retrospective

June 1, 2013


Each day started with chores.  The animals needed fed:  alpacas, chickens, llamas, rabbits, not to mention the running of the sheep and goats!  Each day ended with chores and our youth made them happen.  “Here, sheep, sheep, sheep!  Here, goat, goat, goat!”  Was the call issued forth from the youth member leading the sheep and goats to and from their pasture.  The sheep were fairly easy, but often, the goats led us to pasture!

The animals were unbearably cute and much time was spent with them.  One of our youth was even observed singing to a favorite goat as he scratched behind the goat’s ears.  Cute animals are only part of the story.  Our youth learned about where food really comes from.  They gave their time and energy caring for the one acre garden, stacked fire wood, and built fence for two very big hogs in a new piece of pasture.

Most importantly, our youth learned about the life-changing work of Heifer International.  The 18 hours spent in a simulated global village helped to drive home the importance of food and health.  The youth who “lived” in Tibet and Ghana learned a lot about themselves and the culture in which they lived.  They worked hard to make meals from scratch and had to share resources with one another in order to survive.  They also learned some tough lessons about life when each group’s “baby” died.  The baby was only a water balloon, but meant a lot to the youth as they took turns caring for the little one, willing it to survive.  The Ghanian group brought flowers to the Tibetans as they silently mourned.  Both groups made memorials for their departed child.

Youth and adult participants brought home with them not only great memories and some good pictures, but a renewed sense of purpose and mission in our own ministry.  Over the next year, they plan on carrying out four projects within the community:  Serving a cross-cultural luncheon for the church, organizing a youth lock-in for the community, hosting a movie viewing festival for children, youth, and adults, and organizing a mini-mission outing to Ronald McDonald house in Pittsburgh.

We are thankful for the support of our church family and are grateful for the nurture and care we received from our mission partners at Overlook Farms.  This trip would not have been possible without your love and support!

With Gratitude,

Overlook Farms Mission Team

Youth:  Bethany Bailey, Mya Cameron, Anna Geary, Kolby Glessner, Nathan Hainzer, Tiereni Hitechew (United Church, Shellsburg), Becca Gary, Carly & Matty Stutzman, Megan Wertz (United Church, Shellsburg), and Hunter Younkin (Unity UCC)

Chaperones:  Wes Conn, Susan Geary, Amanda & Matt Deal

Living Life High on the Hog!

Living Life High on the Hog!

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