ELMHURST, IL – March 8, 2019 – St. Peter’s UCC wrapped up its sixteenth annual adult mission trip last month in Port Arthur, Texas. A group of 22 parish members spent a week building and repairing houses affected by Hurricane Harvey in 2017.
After being hit with 45 inches of rain, the lower-income citizens of Port Arthur had no resources to repair the severe water damage in their homes. St. Peter’s UCC saw this as an opportunity to restore hope to the community. Adult mission trip chair persons, Kent Sands and June Nikoleit, organized a relief trip through the Southeast Texas Community Development Corporation (SETCDC), a group who helps low-to-moderate income individuals.
“Every time I return home from one of these trips it makes you realize how fortunate you are, and how many blessings that we have living in a town like Elmhurst,” said Kent.
The church volunteers arrived in Port Arthur on February 9 and worked on three separate locations until February 16. The mission team, under the direction of site coordinators David and Claudia Burgener, built a house used to accommodate volunteers for the SETCDC and repaired two other sites including a single-family home and a duplex, both severely damaged from flooding.
“If your life circumstances enable you to get away through your church or through whatever, do it because you will absolutely love it” Kent said. “I’m extremely proud of St. Peter’s for making the decision that they needed to get involved in these hands-on missions.”