Advent Lutheran Confirmands Take on Washington DC, June 2018 with the help of the Kaelke Fund!

Our group of 11 Confirmands, 2 Junior Chaperones and 4 adults left on a train from Kannapolis, NC headed to Washington DC on June 17th. Pastor Ward and the two Junior Chaperones had taken a similar trip a couple of years ago, so in some ways for them, they could predict what was to happen on the trip (but really, with 14 other “new” people, they quickly discovered to expect the unexpected). For the rest of us it was full on excitement even with a 7am departure and a L.O.N.G. train ride up and back!

The focus of the DC trip each summer is to study the Lord’s Prayer and learn about social justice issues. We were lucky to spend two days at DC Central Kitchen; a nationally recognized “community kitchen” that recycles food from around Washington DC and uses it as a tool to train unemployed adults to develop work skills. We heard about food waste and were impressed with the tremendous number of people fed each day. What an amazing operation! (And after cutting up raw chicken for hours and hours, one of our leaders became vegetarian — and still is since returning to Charlotte). We loved meeting folks at the Community Craft Collective, at Luther Place and buying our new bracelets.

One afternoon was spent working through a Poverty Simulation with another group from Wisconsin, which was very eye opening. How better to try to understand what our less privileged neighbors go through day to day, than attempt to “live” it through simulation. We had the pleasure of meeting with two gentlemen and learned their stories of how they became homeless and how they were able to get out of that situation. The dollar dinner was voted as the most challenging of our experiences in DC, where everyone had to figure out how to make dinner with just $1 each (combine money or go it alone, buy less food but healthy food, or buy more but not healthy food options).

Because an in person meeting wasn’t an option this summer, our group spent one afternoon writing letters to each of NC’s representatives. After working hard all week, the there was one day for tourist activities! The group visited the Holocaust Museum and all the National Memorials.

Thank you Linda Kaelke Foundation for the support of Advent Lutheran’s summer mission trip! We had an amazing time in DC; it was spirit filled, we learned so much about ourselves, we had many God “sightings” and we all came home with a new appreciation of our many blessings.

Peace and Love Be With You! Colin, Carlene, Julie, Ally, Meredith, Aidan, James, Pr Ward, Abby, Andi, CJ, Emily, Jake, Jennie & Ashley (Carol and John – not in this picture)