Make a Difference

Summer Mission Trips are a great way to serve, and bond as a class. Here are the current senior class in Nashville, TN serving at Cottage Grove.

Summer Mission Trips are a great way to serve, and bond as a class. Here are the current senior class in Nashville, TN serving at Cottage Grove.

To lend a helping hand is an opportunity to shine a light in the darkest places. Volunteering helps the world locally and globally. Grace Prep offers students ways to help through Key Club, National Honor Society, and other clubs here, and DFW offers plenty of chances to chip in on one’s own.

People here may be confused about how simple volunteering can be. From activities as simple as going door to door to help the elderly, one can help show the love of God and make a difference within a community.
Even our Dean of Students Phil Smith is involved in volunteering.

“Within our church we had quite a few volunteer items, those were primarily, what we call, kindness evangelism,” said Smith. “There were times when we ran a free car wash at our church. When people asked what the price was, we said we just wanted to bless you in the name of Jesus Christ. We also went around the neighborhood, bought newspapers, and handed them out… We would then ask if they needed help with anything. Through this we would show the love of the Lord.”

Students here can find volunteer opportunities easily through Key Club. A new opportunity, starting this fall, is to serve at Heartis Retirement Home right up the street from us. Key Club decorated there on Thursday, October 13 from 1-3pm, and is filling goody bags for them for trick or treating on Tuesday, Oct. 25 from 1-3pm.

Key Club Members can also serve at the First Christian Church’s Trunk or Treat event on Halloween from 5:30-8pm. Sign up with Key Club to help.

With over 5,000 clubs nationwide, Key Club is the largest serving organization throughout schools. It allows students to help their community.

Seniors Macy Noe, James Walsh, and Matthew Chapman spent a week in Nashville two summers ago working at Cottage Grove Outreach Center, along with about 20 of their classmates.

Seniors Macy Noe, James Walsh, and Matthew Chapman spent a week in Nashville two summers ago working at Cottage Grove Outreach Center, along with about 20 of their classmates.

Grace Prep’s Key Club works with Mission Arlington, Beautiful Feet, and Salvation Army. For more information on Key Club here, contact Sponsor Tamra Brudi.

NHS students will begin working with Arlington’s Duff Elementary this year to tutor students and help teachers.
Smith also has a class mission trip planned to Kentucky this summer for freshmen and sophomores.

This trip will be held in conjunction with Big Creek Missions, http://bigcreekmissions.com/summer. This outreach serves the Eastern Kentucky Appalachian area. The current seniors have served here, and many say it was their favorite mission trip.

Senior James Walsh, has been volunteering in school and out, since he could walk. He has had remarkable experiences working through Mission Arlington’s, Rainbow Express program, since he was in 2nd grade. Rainbow Express is similar to VBS (Vacation Bible School).

The volunteers go for one week in the summer to a low income housing area, knock on doors, and ask if there are children in the home who would like to come to a VBS outside. They usually get about 30-60 kids to attend. They tell Bible Stories, do crafts, and sing and play games with them. Mission Arlington then follows up with them to help the residents find a church if interested.

Walsh organizes a group of his friends, mostly from Grace Prep to serve at a Rainbow Express in the free time he has each spring break and each summer.

“Don’t be afraid, be bold.” Stated James Walsh. “Do not be afraid to make a fool of yourself because we want to be outspoken. We cannot be unashamed if we are worried about failing. The worst that can happen if we try to share the gospel with someone, is they say no. We cannot control whether they accept the Gospel, but we can control whether we tell it to them.”

Seth Mackenzie, a junior at Grace Prep, went across the globe to Albania this summer with his church to reach out to others on a global scale.

“We went there to help with a camp that was put on by a church group there,” said MacKenzie. “They invited us to come hang out, help them with learning English, and talk with them about God.”

Albania is a fairly poor country without typical churches due to past communism rule. Many had not heard about Christ at all.

“I had never been to another country before, so being able to talk to others from a different country about what I believe and what they believe caused interesting experiences throughout the process,” MacKenzie said.

God calls us to help men, women, and children in need. The smallest of actions can make a massive difference whether it is giving someone food, who is standing on the corner, or volunteering for local missions such as Mission Arlington.

The difference students can make is only discovered by doing the deed, not standing idly by to watch. Make a difference, and make a dark present become a brighter future.

For more information about volunteering, contact Mr. Smith or Mrs. Brudi.

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