I grew up at the church. My mother was the church organist, and sometimes our Minister of Music, throughout all of my childhood (and really until last year when she retired). I have vivid memories of running around the church on days off (much like my own child is doing with these snow days), showing up early for Christmas Eve services, and staying late to help turn off the lights. I was at church all the time. I’ve spent every summer of my life going to church camp and every spring and fall participating in youth retreats.
As a teenager, I participated in a lot of youth trips; however, there is one that I remember the most. My junior year of high school, my dad chaperoned a youth retreat. I don’t know if I was happy or sad about him going, but what I do remember is him going. Following that trip, my dad became an active volunteer in the youth department at church and even chaperoned a youth mission trip to NYC where we slept on the floor of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine.
What is telling to me is that I went on A LOT of youth trips as a teenager and the ones I remember the most are the two my dad chaperoned. They left their mark, and we have fun memories as a family. Chaperoning can be scary, and it might take you out of your comfort zone, but what you are creating are memories for you, your family, and for youth and children who sorely need the investment of adults around them saying, “I care about you, and you matter.”
So, as we round out this year, and head into the new year, please consider chaperoning a trip in 2019:
- Youth March Mission Madness, March 22-24
- Youth Mission Trip, June 23-29
- Youth Passport Missions, July 8-13
Let me know if you want to join in on any of these. Thank you!
Written by Marnie Fisher-Ingram