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This summer, a fourth mission trip to Jamaica


This summer, a fourth mission trip to Jamaica

Jen Ramirez has been a youth leader on previous missions to Jamaica. She is pictured with Lenroy, who has lived in the Mustard Seed Community all his life.

Over the past three years, parishioners from Christ Our Light, Cherry Hill, journeyed to Jamaica for a mission immersion experience through the nonprofit organization Mustard Seed in Kingston, Montego Bay and Moneague.

This July 27-Aug. 1 we will once again return to visit our friends in Christ. The week starts off with our greatly anticipated flight into Montego Bay and will be followed by a cultural dinner, Mass at the cathedral, spirituality time with our group, a tour of the Mustard Seed community and service immersion.

The week of learning goes by so fast. We have to take on a new lens to properly see once we recognize the gifts of the poor.

God’s unimaginable comfort becomes our faith connection.

As Catholics we have learned that we give of ourselves and our time to people in need. Through service we meet the people of the community and receive abundantly. Many of the residents will never get a chance to see the world. With your help, we will bring a piece of the world to them.

Certainly, the memories are lasting, and the pictures tell quite a story on our Instagram pages. Yet what is most important is seeing the gifts of the poor. The simplicity attracts us all to an unforgettable joy.

Our team will once again experience this immersion. We invite you to join us. The invitation is open to youth, young adults, families, catechists, ministry leaders, anyone willing to see the world from a different angle and experience solidarity.

Holding a baby who had lost his entire family and was rescued from the dumps by a Catholic organization will always stay with me and has challenged my view of service learning. Ultimately, it is what I learn and bring back to my church community. The miracle of holding a baby brings life and sparks faith.

We will work with children who have a range of disabilities and economically deprived people who have so much to offer us: hugs, handshakes, high fives and blessings. Prayers and singing seem endless. The gift in that is a spirituality and a dependency on God and community when all else fails.

While in Jamaica we will share our love and companionship, while also completing work projects to improve the infrastructure.

Groups are hosted by Mustard Seed weekly. Many of our  regional high schools, parishes and colleges also participate. Pray with us for an unforgettable mission experience of people, culture and faith.

Our high school youth leader, James Chung, said, “The trip was honestly one of the most surprising experiences of my life, I met some of the most genuinely nice people. I always had a good time. The poor residents offered us so much and the sceneries were the best part of the trip. I cannot forget the food! From beginning to end it was a great time.”

Sherine Green, Youth Minister, The Catholic Community of Christ Our Light, Cherry Hill.

REPUBLISHED HERE with permission