Next week will be pretty quiet at MinistryPlace.Net, because I am leading a Team from my church to Ashley, Illinois. While there we will be assisting with the Vacation Bible School that the host church is holding. I will share you a few things about this church:
They have a HUGE heart for Children: Each of the four years I’ve lead teams there, they have reached approximately TWICE the Sunday morning attendance in just Children/youth for VBS (about 30 attendees on Sunday Morning, 50-75 Children in VBS!)
They have vision for their community: They rent the local park each year for VBS, because no one else in their community is reaching out (their church is 5 miles out into the county…)
They have huge obstacles: Ashley is a town of 600 People in South Central Illinois that has some of the following problems – high unemployment, rampant alcoholism, very dysfunctional family structures, are just a few. They have 4 bars and 2 retail liquor sellers. There are times that beer is cheaper than bottled water in Ashley! They know that God is more powerful than any obstacle Satan can put before them.
They have a place in our hearts: The host Church, New Heart Fellowship Church (formerly FBC Beaucoup) is the first place I served in Youth Ministry 9 years ago this month. I will get a chance to spend some time this week mentoring their current Youth Director, who was one of the first students in my time of ministry there. It is also my wife’s hometown. She attended school there, shopped at the local grocery store, and her parents ran the Grain Elevator and Feed Store there for many years.
This will be the first Mission Trip Experience for most of the students on our team. Pray for our team as we travel.