God moments in Alaska for EUM Church mission team

By Karen Brooks, Communications Coordinator, Evangelical United Methodist Church

During the first week of August, a group of eighteen people traveled to Sutton, Alaska for Evangelical United Methodist (EUM) Church’s second annual Alaska mission trip. Sutton is a community where homes are in need of serious repairs, substance abuse is common, families are broken and a sense of hopelessness and despair prevails.

During the week the team was able to complete some great service projects such as putting up a fence for a gentleman that was trapped inside his home by a moose for part of the winter, mowing grass for people that are unable to do it for themselves, dry walling a ceiling for a family that recently suffered from a fire, and splitting fire wood for the elderly to heat their homes this winter.

“Watching God work in the lives of each team member and the people we serve is always the highlight of my trip,” says Cliff Rapier, EUM’s Mission Coordinator. “Being able to stand on a river bank with a young man as he tells me about the struggles he is dealing with in his life, seeing his eyes fill with tears as he sees God’s creation and wonders how anyone can doubt that He exists, and praying with him for God’s forgiveness. This team was able to make a positive impact on the people and the community they served throughout the week and I pray that God was glorified through our words and actions.”

Melissa Bruney, one of the mission team members, says, “I’ve always wondered what my testimony would be if someone asked me about Jesus. Never once did I think it would be from a nine year old boy in Alaska who upon receiving a Bible from us asked me if what he had was a ‘real Bible’. I then asked him if he knew who Jesus’ mom and dad were and hearing ‘nope’ after each question I asked him showed me that even little Caden needed to know about Jesus. I have thought of Caden every day since that afternoon on his porch and I am blessed that God gave me a chance to plant a seed that I hope will blossom into something more for Caden and turns his ‘nope’ into ‘yes!’”

EUM Church is already planning mission trips for 2014. They include:

  • Guatemala – The team will build a home for a family that lives on the inactive section of the city garbage dump.
  •  LA Dream Center – The team will have exposure to the food truck mobile food distribution, adopt a block outreach, Skid Row-under the bridge feeding program, and many other areas of service.
  • Give Kids the World – The team will spend time serving children with terminal or life threatening illnesses and their families.
  • Alaska – The team will complete service projects for the local residents.
  • Israel – The team will serve in a food bank in Jerusalem, clean and repair homes for the elderly and any other area of service that is needed. They will also take a mini tour of the Holy Land of Jesus.
  • Guatemala Christmas gifts – A collection of one gallon size zip lock bags filled with small toys and other gift items will be taken to Guatemala to hand deliver in December.

If you are interested in learning more about any of these mission trips, please contact Cliff Rapier at crapier [at] eumchurch.org or visit our website at www.eumchurch.org.

About EUM Church in Greenville, Ohio

Jeff Harper is Senior Pastor at EUM Church and regular worship services are Saturday at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday at 8:15, 9:45, and 11:15 a.m. at our Worship Center located at 1451 Sater Street (corner of Sater and Sebring-Warner Road) in Greenville, OH.  Kidmunity Children’s Ministry is available for kids age birth through grade six at the 6:30 pm, 9:45 and 11:15 am services. The Downtown Campus, 111 Devor Street, houses our offices and preschool.  For more information, go to www.eumchurch.org or call 548-3211.