Wednesday, October 24, 2012 Posted by Katie
In the last 10 years, I have participated in 22 mission trips. Twenty-Two. You may be surprised to discover that not one of them required a passport. Instead my mission trips took place in locations like Lodge Grass, Montana; Onancock, Virginia; and Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.
Every one of my mission experiences has been within the United States.
In Lodge Grass we served the people of the Crow Nation. They had more than their own law enforcement there on the reservation. They had their own language and lifestyle. The poverty was so severe, I saw a family of six sharing a one-bedroom, single-wide trailer with holes in the walls. It was another world.
In Onancock, we served a vast immigrant population. Many of the kids in our “Kids’ Club” did not speak a word of English. Right there on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, we encountered first generation Americans from Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Honduras. Their families came here for a better life but were all found to be struggling in poverty amid gang violence. It was another world.
In Schuylkill County, we served several small coal-mining towns. I had thought America was the land of opportunity, but in talking with local parents, one sensed the presence of a hopelessness in their poverty so pervasive that it made one marvel at the difference a single industry could make. It was another world.
What have I learned from all of this?
When it comes to mission work, you don’t have to travel far to be a whole world away.
Now, dear friends, may you have the privilege to bring the Kingdom of God with you to worlds unknown…be they near or far.
“The kingdom of God is within you.” – Luke 17:20