Youth group gives up summer fun for mission work
A group of young people from the Vine and Branches Area Faith Community (St. Raphael of Springfield, St. Joseph of Lamberton and the Oratory of St. Thomas of Sanborn) and adult leaders recently participated in Catholic HEART Workcamp in Montana.
These young people gave a week of their summer vacation from school and the absolute freedom that comes with summer in exchange for helping humanity.
Catholic HEART Work camp is a national organization that combines service, worship, friendship and fun in a retreat-like setting. Participants travel to their designated camp city to work, play and pray with other teens from across the nation. The days begin and end with a high energy, motivational program including music, drama, speakers, and prayer. During the day, groups perform various types of service projects including painting, home repair, light construction, landscaping, working in food banks, assisting in child care facilities, and much more.
CHWC partnered with several local agencies to provide home repairs, and maintenance, painting, cleaning and general fix-up for the elderly and low income in the City of Billings and surrounding area.
The local group, led by Erin Hauth, Faith Formation director at St. Raphael Parish, boarded a bus the evening of Sunday, July 9, for the 12-hour trip to Billings, and the camp started on July 10. They shared a bus with a group from St. Joseph’s Church in Montevideo, giving the group a total of 31 participants. The camp in Montana had participants from 12 different parishes from all over the United States.
A typical day at CHWC, says Hauth, was: Wake up at 6:15, breakfast until 7:15, Morning program started at 7:30 and included daily Mass. Between 8 and 9 a.m., the youth and chaperones went to their various worksites until 3 p.m. After that, all were provided free time to shower and relax until supper. Programs each night reflected the theme of this year’s camp: ROOTED. The evening programs are planned to inspire participants to continue serving the next day and renew their commitment to God.
See full story on page 5 of this week's issue of the Springfield Advance-Press.