2017 KY - Emmaus Farm
2016 Milwaukee, WI - Casa Romero Renewal Center Urban Plunge
2015 Milwaukee, WI - Casa Romero Renewal Center Urban Plunge
2014 Johnson City, TN - Appalachia Service Project
2013 Cincinnati, OH - Urban Plunge
2012 Harlem, TN - Appalachia Trip
“I think an ordinary service trip where we work for a week would have given us a lot of good vibes. We would have gone back and probably resumed life the way it was before we started. [However,] With this trip, I think a lot of us have gained two immense intangibles:
- Comfort around strangers, especially people disenfranchised by society.
- A hunger to do more service.
...A lot of us were able to explore what we felt called to do and see the effect we had on others. Knowing that we make a difference on the individual level brings reassurance and fuels the flames that many of us kindled during the week.”
What do we do?
1. Service. 2. Immersion. 3. Reflection.
- We go to serve, to pour out love as best we can for 13 days, showing the people there in words and in actions that they matter, that they are important, that we want to know their stories and their reality, and that we want their lives to touch ours. We go to immerse ourselves in that reality, living alongside them in solidarity, if only briefly. And we go to learn about the reality of their lives, that the love we share and the relationships we build may touch our hearts and transform us – in big ways or in small – into more loving servants in this world for the rest of our lives
- First, we work with an organization – Salvadoran Mission Projects – helping with their Bible School for children. We spend several days in the community of Ahuachapan in northern El Salvador, living in the community there, loving the kids, giving them positive attention, and demonstrating faith by our love in action.
- We then partner with a second organization – CEBES FUNDAHMER – going to a community – Monsenor Oscar Romero – with which we have just recently began an ongoing sister relationship. We spend 2 nights there staying with host families, living in solidarity, sharing in their lives, learning their stories, offering or time, our love, our presence, and a listening ear.
- Finally, we immerse ourselves in the realities of El Salvador, both past and present. El Salvador is still fresh on the heels of a very violent civil war from 1979-1992. We visit sites of massacres, hear people's stories, meet with guerillas who fought against the repressive militaristic government, learn about the Church's history in El Salvador, hear about the life and death of Archbishop Oscar Romero, visiting his home where he was murdered and his tomb, experiencing the powerful impact of his courageous life and how his witness to the Gospel continues to impact those who knew him. We visit others sites of martyrdom. We experience how the Church today attempts to serve the needs of the people. We visit the U.S. Embassy, learning about how U.S. influence, past and present, affects the livelihood of the people of El Salvador. And we converse with politicians from the major political parties to learn about how they are trying to improve their country.