Students on Mission: Philadelphia Mission Trip
Sixteen middle and high school students and four youth investors traveled to Philadelphia Pennsylvania for WTC’s annual Youth Spring Break Mission Trip! Our main goal was to help support ministries that are currently functioning. We did this in two capacities. We have a partnership with Forrest Elementary School. Alonzo Johnson, a church planter and pastor, is on staff at the school and he partners with mission teams so that the students and staff can be served. Youth were assigned various classrooms where they mentored students, supported teachers, and built relationship with both. We were also able to engage with the students during their lunch and recess time. There were dance challenges, athletic competitions, small group conversations, and an overall shift in culture! We believe that building healthy relationships is the best space to show and develop sincere love and showing sincere love is the living Gospel.
Students also led the youth and children’s Bible study at the Neighborhood Church where Pastors Kenneth and Viktoria are currently serving. Pastor Ken was formerly the youth pastor at WTC. Brittany Bynum and Quatasia Harris are also currently in Philadelphia serving alongside Joylettta White. It was so great to see generations of WTC youth now partnering with the current youth in missions! In addition to teaching Bible study, students canvassed the neighborhood to promote an upcoming children’s event.
We are intentional about engaging youth with a “Black experience” each year. We went to the Blacks in Wax Museum in Baltimore last year. This year we stopped at Howard University on the way home. Jackie Grant, a current 3W College Ministry student and WTC Ambassador Scholar who is finishing up her senior year gave us a tour of the illustrious Historically Black University. Students were able to see a probate, engage with current college students, witness a campus protest, and so much more! Holistic development means we are developing every aspect of our students. We take every opportunity to do so.
Each student wrote goals, hopes, and prayers before they left for Philadelphia. There is a challenge to come home different. We don’t want to be the type of people who go off to another community to love and develop others but we don’t gain any insight and development by those with whom we engage. Youth said that the mission trip helped them become more grateful for the parental, community, church, and school support systems that they have. Many of them had personal realizations of their social and spiritual situations that will now push them to think and live differently.