As members of the Hayes Barton Youth Group went about their construction tasks each day, the teens took time to help two small boys hammer boards into the house the group was building for their family. And when they had down time, the youths sat in the grass talking and playing with the 4-year-old and 6-year-old boys.
Earlier this month, 45 youths and adults traveled in three vans to Letcher County, Ky., as part of the Appalachia Service Project to help build and repair local homes. The church has been volunteering with ASP for the past 30 years, and each summer churches from across the country travel to the Appalachia area to participate in the project.
“It really makes a huge impact on the youth that we bring,” said Lisa Coster, co-leader of the ASP project at Hayes Barton UMC. “It changes them. My daughter has gone for the past three years, and I have seen a big difference in her heart from the experience. The youth really bring the light of Christ to the homeowners and the community.”
The teams slept in an old school on cots and ate meals in the school cafeteria. Each evening, they bathed in a makeshift cold water shower in the parking lot constructed from black plastic.
During the week the high school youths and adult leaders spent the time making home repairs, such as painting and drywalling. This year three of the Hayes Barton UMC teams worked on a three-year project of converting a family of seven’s mobile home into a four-bedroom house. Throughout the summer teams from other churches will continue the work of building a new kitchen and bathroom along with a hallway between the trailer and the house. In three years, the trailer will be removed, and the family will be living in the new house.
But while the volunteers work hard on the house, the trip is really about making connections and building relationships with the families whose houses they are working on.
“My favorite part is always getting to know the kids and seeing how happy they are despite living in what we would all call unfortunate circumstances,” said Edward Foyle, who recently graduated from the North Carolina School of Science and Math and attended his third ASP trip this summer. “It really makes you take a second look at what you have every day in your life. It’s really amazing to get to know people that you will most likely never see again, but know that you had a huge impact on their lives.”
Sacred music concert
The Salem Youth Chorus will perform at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 9, at Sacred Heart Cathedral, 200 Hillsborough St., Raleigh. The program entitled Blow Up the Trumpet! features a capella sacred choral music spanning 12 centuries, from Gregorian chants to works by Tallis, Praetorius, Victoria, Billings, Rutter and more. The Salem Youth Chorus was founded in 2007 in order to provide teens and collegiate young adults in the greater Salem and Youngstown, Ohio, area with the opportunity to sing great sacred choral music as crafted by compositional masters. Admission is free, and a free will offering will be collected during the concert.
Marketplace Matters lunch
Hope Community Church is holding a lunch and learn event about infusing Christian principles into the business world at noon Thursday, July 11, at Mia Francesca Trattoria, 4100 Main at North Hills St. Suite 115, Raleigh. Cameron Perkins with Marketplace Matters will share stories and examples of businesses making a difference with Christian principles. For more information, call 919-532-0620 or visit www.gethope.net.
Crossroads Fellowship Free Summer Camp
Children in ages K through rising fourth grade are invited to Crossroads Fellowship morning camp from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. from Monday, July 15, to Friday, July 19, at 2721 E. Millbrook Road, Raleigh. The week will include Bible stories, music, sports, archery, cheerleading, Nerf battles, games and crafts. Registration is required. For more information or to register, visit http://www.crossroads.org or call 919-981-0222.
Support Circle Program lunch
The Support Circles Program for Homeless Families will hold a lunch and learn meeting from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 16, at Millbrook Baptist Church, 1519 E. Millbrook Road, Raleigh. The program is operated by Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh and coordinates teams of community members who provide wrap-around services to homeless families. The meeting will educate about homelessness and provide information about the program.
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