Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Little Vans & The Big Fish

Day 2: Thursday, July 30, 2009 by Aryana H.

            Our first 2 days were very successful!  Today, was very eventful.  We woke up at 6:30 and were given breakfast by Wilmington, NC church and were shown off by a lot of caring people.  The drive Thursday was less than half the travel time of the first day, although the nerves, in our van at least, were still tense.  Elizabeth and I had an argument about s

omething, although I don’t remember what.  We then agreed not to speak to each other for awhile.  At the end of the argument though, we both remembered that we were 3rd: God first, others second, me 3rd.  So then we pretty much got into a competition about who can put others before themselves!

            We arrived in Madison, GA to be greeted by a lovely group of people and some rain.  But it had cleared up by the time we arrived in Atlanta for a fun time at the largest aquarium in America!  We visited many cool creatures, including a whale shark!  Rob said the Mystic Aquarium could fit in the tank of this aquarium!  After, we visited the Centennial Olympic Park, where the 1996 Olympics were held.  We saw a water show, and also saw the giant torch.  Later that night we returned to Madison, GA church.  We heard the amazing story, bravely told by Sally, about how her and her family who live in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi survived Hurricane Katrina but lost all of their belongings, their home and the newly built second house for her father.  This was the first time she had told this story to anyone.  I am proud to say that Union Baptist represented itself in a very good way.  We all listened with such great attention Sally felt open to sharing her story with us.  To finish off this day, we truly learned the meaning of “southern hospitality.”  We were taken in by families who didn’t even know us and we were treated like family.  They even picked up Zoe and Sara at the airport at 2 a.m. and still woke up before 7:30 to great us with a nice breakfast.  We want to thank Karen & Forest Pagett, Rob’s mom Laura & her husband Bobby Smith, Jodie & Dick Schmidt, and Rob’s cousins Rusty & Shelly Ewing for putting us up at their homes Thursday night.

            We love you all and miss all of you and hope to see you August 11th when we return!  Keep us in your prayers for safety on the worksite and for safe travels please!

Love, Aryana H. & the UBC Missionaries

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A Moving Sendoff & A 14 Hour Drive

Day 1: Wednesday, July 29, 2009 posted by Elizabeth B.

            Today we embarked on part one of our journey.  The support we had in our send off was overwhelming!  At 4:30 in the morning around fifty members of the church, friends, and family arrived at the church to see us off.  The vans that we were to ride in for three days looked incredibly small at first.  There are five vans each with around six or seven missionaries in each van.  It is very crowded with all of the people and luggage and such.  The set up of the vans was that you knew or were comfortable with at least one person.  Within a few hours, I know from my experience, that you felt like you have known these people for a long time.  While the car ride was long, it was eventful.  We made several stops.  One of the very first stops was because Rob’s van was having problems.  They had to switch vans at the airport in Baltimore.  After this stop, the rest of the stops were all to stretch legs or use the facilities.  While the ride might have been fun, I’m pretty sure that I can speak for most when I say that getting to the Activity Center of the First Baptist Church in Wilmington, North Carolina was a huge relief.  Everyone greeted us when we walked in.  The first thing we did was bring mattresses to the dance studio for the girls and to the Boy Scouts room for the boys.  After we were all settled, everyone just hung out with Wilmington Youth playing basketball, or pool, or ping pong, or the Wii.  Eventually, we had pizza and soda for dinner.  After that we had a worship service full of songs and scripture.  It was actually structured a lot like our youth group worship.  Later on we had some free time and then we had to be in our rooms at midnight with lights out at 12:10 a.m.  It was a great day!

Elizabeth B.

Mission Trip Begins

Union Baptist Church sends 36 members of it's congregation to New Orleans on a dark, muggy morning. Seeing the missionaries off were at least 38 people (and one canine). While it was difficult to pack vans, and make sure everyone was where they needed to be (while still trying to wake up) the excitement was evident.

From a "left behind" point of view it was sad to see everyone go but know that we will be there with them as a congregation while they are here with us in spirit and in prayer.

Good luck missionaries and God bless!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Test of the Blog

Hello everyone!  This blog will be for the participants of the Union Baptist Church mission trip to New Orleans.  This is a test post.