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SPRING ARBOR, MI — After the cancellation of COVID-19 in 2021, mission trips for charity and outreach continue this spring at Spring Arbor University.
The five Jackson-area Free Methodist University student trips include two in-state and three outside of Michigan, and work ranges from helping schools, helping the poor and helping reconstruction of disaster-affected areas.
Plans for trips in 2021 have fallen through due to the pandemic, said Andrew Phelps, a recent graduate and outreach ministry coordinator for the university’s spiritual life department. Being able to run five different trips with groups of up to 20 students each this year is exciting, he said.
“A lot of these trips are our first time to these places,” Phelps said. “So it’s exciting to be able to do something new and a bit unfamiliar.”
The three out-of-state trips are to Donaldsonville, Louisiana; Soldotna, Alaska and Washington, D.C.
The trip to Donaldsonville is to help rebuild areas impacted by hurricane damage and will require “hard, physical labor,” Phelps said. The trip to Alaska takes about three hours south of Anchorage, and students will work at the Soldotna homeless shelter and a youth Bible camp.
The trip to the nation’s Capitol has an “evangelical purpose,” Phelps said, and will consist of prayer walks through the city to connect with people.
One of Michigan’s trips is to Flint to work with public schools and the city’s Boys and Girls Club. The other is in Newberry on the Upper Peninsula, to help the economically disadvantaged in “a variety of ways”, Phelps said, including helping with soup kitchens, moving furniture or cleaning up areas hit by natural disasters.
There will be one or two Spring Arbor University staff members with a group of eight to 20 students on each trip, Phelps said.
The university is seeking financial support so that the missionaries can make their trips. Donations can be made to this university website. To learn more about each trip, email Phelps at [email protected]
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