Monday, July 22, 2013

student missions: trip reflection

Here is a reflection from Jeanette Coury on last week's Student Missions trip to Nazareth Farm. Jeanette led the team of missionaries on the trip to West Virgina, and she also currently serves with Student Impact at Nativity, encouraging and connecting teens to serve in Ministry and Missions. Last summer, Jeanette traveled to our strategic partner St. Anne's Church in Haiti as well.
I was truly blessed to have the privilege of spending a week at Nazareth Farm with our teens from Nativity. We had an application and interview process back in late winter and the Holy Spirit called forth six beautiful high school students with a

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

student missions: guest post

Here's a guest blog post from Chris Wesley, our Director of Student Ministry. This past Sunday, a group of students from Nativity left to spend the week at Nazareth Farm in West Virginia. Check out a few thoughts from Chis and some photos from the trip...

Missions With The Next Generation

This week a group of students traveled to Nazareth Farm located in deep West Virginia. They’ll be staying with dozens of other teens from across the country on a small farm and each day go out into the community to repair houses and build relationships. I’m so excited to hear their stories and see the life change that will happen for them this week. It’s been a long journey to get this trip together, in fact it’s the first one we’ve had in 7 years. You might wonder, “Why the long gap?” 

While our Missions trips were very successful years ago, there was a lot of labor into something with little

Saturday, July 6, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

Bruce, Kelly, Martha and Sharon have landed in Washington! After an incredible week in Haiti, our team is almost back home. Today's travel went without a hitch. Thanks again for all of your support and prayers this week. Please continue to send encouragement to the team here on the blog and on the NativityMissions Facebook page. And when you see our international travelers around Nativity on the weekend, be sure to take a few minutes to ask them about their trip and thank them for their service.

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

The team has checked in at the Port-au-Prince airport and are all set to leave on their flight to Miami. They left around 8:30am this morning from St. Anne's to allow plenty of time to make it for the 3:15pm departure. Traffic can be very unpredictable on the main road along the coast, especially working your way through some of the towns on market day.

Our missionaries get into Miami at 5:30pm -- they are scheduled to leave again at 7:40pm arrive

C2 - Haiti: Home Team Reflection

Today's Home Team reflection is from JJ Beers. JJ was a member of last summer's Travel Team as well: 
It is funny how things happen, and more so for a reason. I did come across my journal from last year when we (Ellen, Jeanette, Mitch and I) were on our mission trip to Haiti. We did not know what to expect. We were going to build physical, emotional, and spiritual relationships with Fr. Wilner, the children attending the camp, and the people in Labrande. I can think of many

Friday, July 5, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

The Fourth of July celebrations continued last night for our missionaries. They had a meal of chicken, corn, rice, and mashed potatoes -- an American meal. Fr. Wilner and the team sang Happy Birthday for our country at dinner and enjoyed a celebratory toast as well. We're so grateful to Pere Wilner, all the parishioners at St. Anne's, and the whole community of Labrande for being such wonderful hosts to our mission teams and such great partners to work alongside.

Today was the last day of camp at St. Anne's Church. The morning started with the usual rally, and today Fr. Wilner and Unsie, the seminarian, got up with the animators to dance! The team

Thursday, July 4, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

Happy Fourth of July from Labrande! Breakfast this morning was goat, soup, boiled potatoes, peanut butter and bread. In Haiti, breakfast and lunch are larger meals while dinner is light (and many Haitians only eat two meals). Often a hot soup is served to help with the heat of the day. The team got up with the animators during the morning rally, singing and dancing in front of the whole camp. The children absolutely loved it!

As some of the reflections indicated, each team member has really found a niche in the camp's daily activities. Bruce has spent a lot of time with the boys and was helping them with crafts

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

We received some great words of reflection from each of our Travel Team members last night in an e-mail. Hearing their thoughts and feelings at this point in the trip is really special, and it's great that we can celebrate with them all the ways that God is moving during their trip. Continue leaving comments to show your support and encouragement and praying for all of our missionaries as well as our partners in Haiti!

During the last three days, I have witnessed God at work through our young animator leaders. They each travelled a long distance on a rough road and made sacrifices. Their energy and drive and love of God's children shine through every minute. They guide with a firm gentle hand, and always, somehow know just when to respond to the group's need with just enough discipline. Each

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Home Team Reflection

Tonight's Home Team reflection is from Mary Kay Kirchner:
The C2 - Haiti Mission has been am amazing opportunity for personal growth and faith renewal. The very concept of a church mission is constantly evolving, from an older philosophy of conversion to a newer philosophy of connection.

I think of the Travel Team everyday and I continue to offer my simple prayer that

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

Our missionaries are having a great week. It's amazing to think that their trip is at the halfway point!

The theme for the Bible camp at St. Anne's this week is "You are the Light of the World" from Matthew 5:14. All the activities and crafts that the campers are doing and our team is helping out with are based on this verse. One of the animators is back from last year and she has passed along her greetings to last year's team. It's awesome to see deepening relationships develop between our two communities: it's all about relationships!

Kelly wrote in a note back home how much she's enjoying the children at camp, "At one time, I had seven little girls on my arm as I was walking around the area. They also really like my long fingernails, and they scratch each other with them." Kelly has also connected closely with one of

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Home Team Reflection

Today's Home Team reflection is from Cindy Dohony:
It’s incredible to believe that after almost four months of preparations our audacious C2 - Haiti travel team is approaching their half way mark to their visit in Labrande. With the direction and guidance of team lead, Bruce McEntee, Sharon, Martha and Kelly have been embraced by this wonderful community of St. Anne’s Church. “The children are precious” and “the Sunday Mass just beautiful” as quoted by Kelly Dohony in awe of the people and her surroundings. “They walk from up to two hours away dressed for church and it amazes me how much pride they have in

C2 - Haiti: Trip Update

Monday was the first day of camp in Labrande, and our team was well rested and ready to jump in... After laying low, only venturing out for a short walk around the community on Sunday afternoon, they all hit the sack early and slept well. The bells start at 5:30am each morning and are rung a few times announcing Mass, which is celebrated at 6:30am at St. Anne's. After Mass, our missionaries enjoyed a breakfast of goat, plantains, rice and beans, and mango. The team also shared a few gifts with Fr. Wilner, including a personalized copy of 'Rebuilt' for the church.

The camp is held in the parish school -- the church, school, and rectory where our teams stay are all located in the same walled compound. Bruce, Kelly, Martha and Sharon wandered down to camp before the children arrived and met the "animators" (i.e. counselors) who run the camp. There are about twelve animators, young men and women in their late teens/early twenties who will travel to different churches putting on camps all summer. The

Monday, July 1, 2013

C2 - Haiti: Home Team Reflection

In addition to all the updates we'll be sharing from our missionaries in Haiti this week, we will also get the opportunity to hear reflections from the members of the Home Team as well. A lot of work goes into preparation for the week-long experience at St. Anne's Church; the Travel Team and Home Team have been meeting together weekly since early April. The Home Team's support with logistics, encouragement, and prayer is instrumental in a successful trip experience. Today's reflection is from Nancy Galligan, this year's Home Team Leader: