PUMC Youth Shares Personal Account of Mission Work

February 10, 2012

Name: Hannah Gipson

Age: 17

School: Prattville Christian Academy

Years Attended Prattville United Methodist Church: 17

What mission trips have you participated in with PUMC? Nashville 2009; Hinton NC 2010, 2011; Choir Tour 2010, 2011

What was your favorite trip and why? The mission trip to Nashville was by far my favorite. Through helping and serving the homeless, my eyes were opened to the many ways that God works in people’s lives. I had an awesome time and learned so much about God and His love for His people.

At what point in the trip was it evident God called you to be a part of the trip? It was evident to me God had called me to be on this mission trip when I met a young, homeless couple named Tammy and Pete. They shared with me their story of becoming homeless, and how God had been with them every step of the way. Through their story, I realized that God called me to be on this mission trip, not only for me to try to make an impact on these people, but because He knew that they would make a lasting impact on me.

What was the biggest challenge on the trip? The biggest challenge of this trip was stepping out of my comfort zone, and actually trying to get to know the homeless people we came in contact with.

How are PUMC Mission trips different from say school or family trips? Mission trips differ from just a school or family trip because they help build faith, character, and lasting relationships.

Why is it important to you to develop a sense of giving and caring at a young age? A young person that is caring and giving can impact and set a huge example for people more than adults sometimes can.

The Resurrection Run is a big fundraiser for youth missions. Tell the AWF Conference more about that. The Resurrection Run is the most important fundraiser for youth missions. It’s a 5K/10K race on March 3 through historic downtown Prattville, Alabama. All of the proceeds go to the youth missions programs. It’s an awesome, fun way to support the youth group. More details and registration can be found online at www.resrunfumc.com.

What are some changes some people will see this year from previous years? People can definitely expect to see more organization due to the church’s experience with putting on the run. There will be electronically tabulated race results, and it will hopefully be larger in scale as people have come to know the Resurrection Run as a solid, well run event year after year.

How fast do you think Nick, your youth director, will run…..or will he finish at all? I’m sure he’ll finish… But it might take a few hours… or days.

I heard it poured last year during the run but was still a success! How did the youth group come together and work as a team to still make it a success? We got our rain jackets, umbrellas, set up tents, and worked together to do what we needed to do. A little rain never hurt anyone.

What words of advice would you give to those reading this throughout the conference in regards to supporting youth groups? The youth are the future of the church, so it is incredibly important for us to have support. You can support youth groups through your service, money and many other ways.

In ten years you hope to be…… graduated from college, teaching elementary school, and married with children.