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Domestic mission trips are designed to create opportunities for students to engage in either relational ministry or construction work.

Aurora Methodists to lend assistance to Oklahoma City tornado victims

AURORA, Ill., June 3, 2019 — Inspired by Jesus’ teachings to serve others, 20 volunteers from Aurora’s Flowing Forth United Methodist Church will spend June 8-16 at Oklahoma City to help residents rebuild from a 2013 tornado.

On Sunday (June 2), Rev. Derek Rogers, Flowing Forth pastor, culminated a worship service at Aurora Christian School with a commissioning ceremony for volunteers—11 high-school youth and nine adults.

After volunteers introduced themselves, congregants were invited to lay hands on the delegation. Tom Carter of Aurora prayed over the group. 

The mission team will partner with Next Step Ministry, a Madison, Wis.,-based nonprofit that coordinates short-term mission trips for long-term community development.

Next Step leads thousands of students on one-week mission trips that connect them with sustainable community-led initiatives. Initiatives include domestic, disaster relief, international and Native American reservations.

Domestic mission trips are designed to create opportunities for students to engage in either relational ministry or construction work. Many of the most common projects include repair work selected by local leadership such as flooring, siding, roofing, drywall, building wheelchair ramps, and more.

Even on the construction trips, there is a strong emphasis on relational outreach and encouraging students to connect with community members students are working with. Some trips offer more in-depth relational serving opportunities such as vacation Bible school, community block parties, working with local nonprofits and more.

Rev. Rogers said, “Pray for us as we bring hope and healing to families and communities. Pray that we can see and feel God in new ways as we serve as Jesus’ hands and feet in the world.”

Team members will file updates and photos about the mission trip on Flowing Forth’s website, and on Facebook and Instagram. The team will report on the trip at the 10 a.m. Sunday, June 23, worship service at Aurora Christian School, 2255 Sullivan Rd.

The Oklahoma mission trip will be Flowing Forth’s second in three weeks. Rev. Rogers and three college coeds returned Saturday, June 1, from Reynosa, Mexico, where they spent a week of summer vacation helping construct a concrete block home for a local resident. Mexico mission-trip members will report to the congregation at 10 a.m. worship Sunday, June 16. The public is invited.

Call (630) 239-2321 for more information

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Update from The Beacon-News 

Al Benson
Freelance Photo-Journalist

Al Benson is an Aurora-based freelance photo-journalist. He is currently an archives research specialist at Aurora University. His work has appeared in The Voice, The Daily Herald, The Beacon-News, and the Chicago Tribune.

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