This summer and the changing plans

Let me start this post by apologizing. We were not effective in communicating the change of plans for this summer. We made the students aware of the changing plans in both Sunday school and on Wednesday nights and it was in print in an email that was sent out, but we are aware that this did not reach everyone. So this blog is to make you aware of the changes and to let you know what has happened and what will be happening.

The original plan this summer was to join Encuentro, a nazarene missions organization, and go to Costa Rica. This was a scheduled trip outside the country that we go on every four years allowing students one opportunity to go on an overseas mission trip. Communication from Encuentro was poor. It wasn't until mid-august that I was aware of our dates and when we would be going. I had priced airline tickets in May 2017 to get a ball park figure realizing I may be a couple hundred off. When I went to price tickets in August, they had doubled in price. I believe part of this is due to demand, a lot of students going to Costa Rica the exact same time. I had not planned on this increase and it made the cost of the trip exceed $2000.00 a person. This was too much and I could not ask families to foot this bill.

I made Encuentro aware of this issue, and we tried to find other cheaper tickets, but to no avail.

At this point I decided that even though we could not go to Costa Rica, we would look at other opportunities to go on a mission trip. I could not find anything that was satisfactory in the areas of cost, mission, and safety. I decided that the best decision was to go somewhere in the country. Since we were not going to be going overseas, my desire was to participate in a trip that did not cost as much and yet take us somewhere we had not been before.

Paul Neil had used Student Life Camps several times before and found them to be incredible. He said that the camps were well done and that it had an incredible impact on his students. So we are going to be going to Birmingham Alabama to a Student Life Mission Camp. During the day we will be working in the community on a mission project and at night we will be worshipping with other groups who have been out in the community as well.

The trip will be July 15th through July 22. We will be going to Birmingham , Alabama and be staying on Birmingham- Southern's Campus. We are opening this trip up to students who are now currently in the 6th - 12th Grades.

We will be at the camp Monday through Friday and will have Saturday as our fun day which will be visiting Atlanta. We will visit the Coke Museum, Georgia Aquarium, and College Football Hall of Fame.

The cost of the trip will be $600 dollars for the week. This is all inclusive and includes meals, and activities. We will be fundraising for this event and hope to provide the opportunity to fundraise half of the trip cost. Deposit of $100 will be due by January 17th to secure a spot.

Once again, let me apologize for the confusion regarding the summer. It was a disappointment to me when faced with the difficult decision to cancel the mission trip, but felt it necessary when faced with the financial cost. If you have any questions about the changes or the upcoming trip, please call me at 304-419-4545.