For those who weren’t able to be part of our worship service this past Sunday, here’s a recap of what some of our youth shared about their experience during our mission trip with Blue Theology.
On our first full day of service, we went down to the beach to clean up trash. Together we picked up around 100 pounds of trash. While we were saving the environment, we were also having fun and building friendships. Beach cleanups are a worthy cause to bring people together, to focus on the environment and to learn ways to protect it.
- Norah, 6th Grader
The church we went to makes something called “plarn.” Plarn is made by using used plastic grocery bags and cutting them into strips, then looping all of those together. They then use the long strips to crochet them all together into large sleeping mats for the homeless. These mats can be used for insulation in the winter, and to avoid the heat in the summer. It can take around 700 bags to make one of the mats. - Jackson, 7th grader
On Monday, we worked with Galveston Bay foundation to help restore some of the wetland shore lines. We planted sea grass using a dibbler, which is a wedge-like tool that you drive into the ground and wiggle back and forth to make a hole big enough to plant the sea grass. We worked in groups of three with one person as the dibbler, one that plants and one that holds the bunches of seagrass. By planting sea grass we hope to build back the ecosystem and help with erosion. We also moved a net along the bottom of the water and then picked it up quickly so we were able to see what lived in the water. There was mostly clear shrimp and minnows but we also saw a sea snot and a stingray which was apparently very rare.
We also went to the local biosphere which is a recycling plant. They told us that they sort and compact materials only to be shipped off somewhere else. I was a little disappointed to hear this but it tells us that recycling isn’t the best solution, we really need to focus on reusing and reducing the amount of waste we produce. – Morgan, Senior
On Wednesday, we participated in two activities, the first of which being service at a food bank in Texas City. Our work at the food bank was comprised of two jobs: packing lunches for kids in the area, and sorting produce into “keep” and “throw away.” Those of us packing lunches formed an assembly line, and completed a total of 741 meal kits. The group sorting through produce delicately parsed through moldy and decomposing vegetables to find the fresh food, eventually filling 3 pallets with edible produce. During this service, the members of this youth group worked in harmony, collectively helping each other serve others. This sense of community continued into our next activity: Prairie planting at Galveston Island State Park. At this site, we transferred different plants from a nursery to a piece of land in need of rejuvenation. The grasses we planted will provide lasting, positive effects on the environment, acting as erosion prevention and as an all natural carbon sink. Each member of the group worked just as hard as before to complete this task. I’d like to especially highlight the efforts of those of us on their first mission trip, who have never experienced this kind of service before due to COVID restrictions. Despite being new to service work at this level, they all sprung into action and worked as diligently as any experienced member of the youth group. - Gabriel, Junior