From Here to There: A series about Madison County residents who travel to help their fellowman. If you know of an individual or civic, school or church group that has embarked on a mission trip in the last year, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ANDERSON, Ind. — Having just returned from a mission trip to Mexico, 16 members of Faith Church are newly appreciating the blessings in this country. With a mind toward serving — as opposed to simply enjoying a cultural experience — they worked in an orphanage in Poza Rica.
“When you meet the kids, they steal your heart in three minutes,” said Steven Beverly, marketing manager at Minnetrista. “When you hear what they’ve gone through — some of the stories are so bad I wish I didn’t know them. I went to share God’s love with them and found smiles and laughter don’t need any translation.”
Through light construction work, purchasing six months of supplies for the agency, and spending a lot of time with the children, the team was a “shot in the arm” for the 10 to 12 volunteers who run the orphanage.
“My son, Isaac (14), was the catalyst for us going on the trip,” said Kelli Derkach, who works at Moody Broadcasting. “We spent a lot of time playing with the children and loving them. I learned that where God is present, there is no language barrier. Anyone can understand a hug.”
“They were so happy to see us,” said Isaac, student at Muncie Southside. “They accepted us. We were white and aliens to them and they just accepted us. I learned that there is a lot more in this country that I take for granted than I realized. Clean water, indoor plumbing, and things like that. They don’t have that everywhere.”
“It really does change your perspective on life and living here in the United States,” said Beverly. “Even the people here who have very little actually have a whole lot.”
Faith Church travels to a foreign land every year. In addition to this trip, they also worked in Honduras in August. Not neglecting their homeland, they also have a disaster response team, which was in Henryville the first day the tornado hit.
“Whenever we go on a mission trip, we want to help a ministry do something they couldn’t do on their own,” said Carl Lamb, church ministries pastor for 18 years. “Our primary goal is to represent Jesus well and to lift him up. We represent the message of how much Christ loves people. We do these things because he would do these things if he were flesh and blood today.”