Spotlighting Our Local, National & International Outreach
As summer approaches, things are opening up and restrictions are being lifted which is great news for the Youth Group. They will get the opportunity to travel to Houston this year to take part in a Mission Trip. Read more about their plans in our first article.
If you're getting antsy to get out and are fortunate enough to have spare time (or can flex your work schedule), consider volunteering in the community. There are plenty of opportunities such as the Food Bank, Community Kitchen or our churches own Mission Starts at Home. If your work week is filled, you could always join FUMC at Habitat for Humanity one Saturday this year. Reply to this email if you have suggestions or would like more information.
Youth Mission Trip
After a year at home without being able to go on our usual summer
mission trips, the youth are excited to go to Houston, Texas this
year. Last year it was going to be the senior high mission trip, but
this year we are all going as a group which includes the mid high
teens. There will be four adults and 15 youth. It takes
about a day and a half to drive there in the van and Suburban. We
will also be pulling the large trailer. Our first night we will be
staying at a guest ranch in Byers, Texas found on Airbnb. On our way
home we are staying at a hotel in Amarillo, Texas. While we are
there, we will be restoring homes damaged during Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and
possibly cleaning up some of the mess left by Winter Storm Uri. Hopefully, we will get to do
some interesting rebuilding. Our teens love to do construction work.
We also have a few fun things planned. We will be going to NASA and
the beach while we are in Texas.
We will be working for The Restoration Team, which is comprised of
churches from several denominations and other groups, such as Red Cross, that help during
disasters. When I went to Perkins school of
Theology to begin my Masters in Specialized Ministry, I met Trevor
Barnett. He was in my small group. When the teens met to discuss
where they would like to go for their 2020 mission trip, they chose
Houston. Since I know a lot of Texas youth directors, I asked on
Facebook for suggestions and Trevor contacted me. When Hurricane
Harvey hit, Trevor started The Restoration Team. We were excited when he offered us a
place to work. We will be staying in a school that is used during
the year as a preschool but in the summer turns into lodging for
mission teams. If you would like to read more about The Restoration
Team, their website is: https://www.therestorationteam.org.
Projects completed by The Restoration Team
before and after
To Support Our Youth Mission Trip
These mission trips usually cost between $8000 and $10000. Each
youth pays $100 to go. In a normal year, there would be plenty of opportunities to host fundraising activities to help cover the remaining expense, but this isn't a normal year. If you're able, please make a donation to help this worthy trip either by sending a check to the church or donating online at fumcloveland.com. To ensure your funds get directed to the youth trip, include "Houston Mission Trip" on the check memo line or in the notes when paying online.
These mission trips are truly life changing for the teens and adults
that go on them. They learn practical life skills like cleaning,
cooking, construction, and working with different personalities. It
is something that they look forward to every year. We appreciate all
the support the church gives us for these trips.
Let's hear from the Youth Group about their upcoming trip
"A mission trip to me is a way to spend time with the church while being able to help communities that need it. Even though the work we do is tiring and difficult, it’s so rewarding seeing all the work we get done knowing we had fun working together to complete it."
— Erick Robinson (6 trips)
"Going on a mission trip was probably the best decision in my life. I learned valuable skills, made great friends, and was able to really help people in need."
— Ryan Hennings (6 trips)
"Mission trips have been a great experience. I’ve absolutely grown as a person from these unique chances that most haven’t been given the honor to do. It feels like I’m putting good out into the world as I feel we get less chances by the day. Also, I cherish each moment spent with my youth group on these endeavors."
— Christian Williams (5 trips)
"I want to go on a mission trip because it is a good way to help people and do good for a community. It is also a great opportunity to socialize with people and with recent events that is very important."
— Brandon Fidler (6 trips)
"I want to go on the mission trip because I love being in Texas and have never gone to the beach before. I would also like to go because I had a lot of fun last year at Wyoming."
— Kane Kenders (2 trips)
"I like mission trips because we get to visit places different from our own and have a positive impact on people."
— Bryn Morgan (7 trips)
"There are a couple of reasons I enjoy going on mission trips. First of all, is getting to spending time with all of my close friends from church that I have made through the years. Second, I’ve always enjoyed working and helping others because it just feels natural for me, as though it’s something I was made to be a part of."
— Cannon Leitz (7 trips)
"When I come home from mission trips, I have always learned something new. I come home with new friends and memories that will be with me for the rest of my life. Getting to go on these trips humbles me and gives me the opportunity to give back to God, who has given me so much."
— Karissa Fidler (5 trips)
On May Day, volunteer Workers United at a home in Loveland just off Denver Ave near Walmart to put some finishing touches on a rare Habitat for Humanity renovation. Five volunteers from FUMC and two from Immanuel Lutheran joined H4H staff and Becky, the future owner of the house, to paint and stain doors, wipe down cabinets and haul out materials prior to the final cleaning.
It turns out that Becky's grandmother was the first to own the house. Becky, who had fond memories of the place, kept tabs on it and was fast-tracked by H4H when it became available. She was looking forward to taking possession soon so her growing family could settle in.
As you can see from the photos below, our FUMC volunteers were not wearing masks. May 1st happened to be the first day that Habitat for Humanity greenlit a mask free work environment in cases where everyone has been fully vaccinated.
It's great to see a lot of familiar faces signed up for H4H, but we'd also love to see new faces as well. If you would like to be added to the FUMC H4H volunteer mailing list or you are curious and have some questions, simply reply to this email or contact Mark Elliott. Also, if the signup is filled for a day you'd be interested in volunteering, get in touch to see if more slots can be opened up.
Pura Vida Update
To date, a total of 24 individuals or couples have joined the virtual work team dedicated to building a home in Guatemala for Manuela and her two grandsons. Work is slated to begin in July. Team members will receive daily updates during the week of the "trip", including exclusive access to photos and videos documenting the progress Guatemalan construction crew has made.
Traditionally, the FUMC team has purchased a wood burning stove as a house warming gift (no pun intended) to the family. It is one of the basic needs for every home in Guatemala. The Missions Committee agreed to commit $150 to purchase and install a stove in Manuela's new home.
Once again, your generosity has exceeded expectations. Contributions from virtual team members combined with a portion of this past Easter Offering will be more than enough to complete construction of Manuela's home and cover the cost of a wood burning stove. When asked where best excess funds could be directed, Mark Ely, founder and executive director of Pura Vida, suggested that the Unsponsored Student Fund was currently their greatest area of need. The Missions Committee agreed to commit the excess funds to help with the education of deserving students in Lemoa and the surrounding areas. The funds go towards such things as tuition, supplies, uniforms, bus fare and tutoring. Visit https://www.puravida.org/program-details.html to learn more about the scholarship program.
In April, Reverend Steve attended the monthly Missions Committee to propose a program near to his heart that he had been contemplating for quite some time. Steve had recognized that access to basic amenities such as showers are limited for the homeless population in our community. His idea is to open up the church facilities to allow the homeless to take hot showers.
Access to showers in the basement of the church would be scheduled and supervised. He envisions 15 minute time slots scheduled in advance. A couple of volunteers would be on hand to grant entry to the church, monitor the area and provide help or supplies as needed.
The first step was to get approval from the Board to proceed. With that approval, the Missions Committee will be coordinating with other community programs serving the homeless to work out how to implement the program. Soon you may be asked to volunteer to make this program a success. If this program resonates with you, the Missions Committee is looking for someone to champion it, so reply to this email if you'd be interested in helping get this on its feet.
First United Methodist Church
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