“I really enjoyed the challenge of learning new skills, working together to finish a task, and meeting new people,” said Jack Carder. “It felt good to be able to help others in need.”
During the week, highlights of the work performed by the youth (and two adult chaperones) included helping a thrift store organize donations, painting, landscaping, building steps, and basic home repairs. Gilford Community Church (GCC) Youth Director Scott Hodsdon said their annual summer mission trips are designed, however, for much more than just work.
“The trip is meant for attendees to reflect on and have an impact on their own lives,” he said. “Every night, we talked about life, family, choices, and our own abilities to make a difference…I believe everyone on the trip learned how capable, talented, and important they are to their community, friends, and family.”
Fellow youth participant Klava Worthen said she also enjoyed the social aspects of the trip. “I thought all the other people were going to be quiet, but they weren’t,” she said. “They were really cool to be around. I kind of wish it was 2 weeks.”
Expressing appreciation for Hodsdon’s mentorship of the youth during the trip, Pastor Michael Graham said GCC’s Summer Mission Trips excite the entire congregation. “We can’t all go on the trip with them, but we followed along on Facebook, which was fun for all of us,” he said.
It was ‘fun,’ added Hodsdon, with a deeper purpose. “The group worked hard, shared a lot of special moments with each other, and learned a little more about themselves,” he said. “Overall, it was a fantastic trip.”
Located in Gilford, NH, GCC is an inclusive, open community with a broadly ecumenical spirit that welcomes people from all denominational and cultural backgrounds. Sunday service takes place at 10 a.m. at 19 Potter Hill Rd., Gilford, NH and is also available on a livestream feed on GCC’s Facebook page.