‘These trips are about what God is doing’
A group of 37 students and six teachers from King’s Christian Collegiate high school in Oakville recently returned from the Dominican Republic where they served others while learning more about God, says teacher Ron Masengi.
The group teamed up with Careforce International and went to the city Los Alcarizzos. They assisted in various tasks and duties such as digging foundations, mixing and pouring cement for two houses being built for local families. They helped with the ground work for a church that is looking to build in another part of the city.
The students also worked with a local Christian school called The Lighthouse and created crafts and activities.
“The basic purpose for the trip was to serve another community; however, the deeper purpose for all our service trips is for students to see and experience God through another culture and socioeconomic demograph,” says Masengi.
“This deeper purpose not only involves seeing and experiencing God but also seeing themselves through God’s eyes. In order for us to grow closer to God, we need to see ourselves as He sees us but also as He created us to be,” he says.
King’s emphasizes devotions on its service trips. Each morning there was time for quiet individual devotions and every night large and small group devotions. Students worked through Bible passages and journal questions for the individual devotions. The large group devotions included singing, individual student testimonies and a teacher directed lesson based on the morning individual devotional. For the last daily devotion students and teachers unpacked the day in small groups.
“The devotions became a pivotal part of the trip,” says Masengi.
Grade 11 student Ashleigh Davis describes her experience as life altering and memorable in a school newsletter.
“The trip to Dominican Republic not only allowed for us help make a difference in people’s lives in the community but also in our personal life,” she says. “The whole concept of ‘learning to serve and serving to learn’ came true in so many different ways.”
There were many lessons learned including that serving others is the best way to see, hear, and experience God in a tangible manner, says Masengi.
“These trips are about what God is doing,” says Masengi. “Once we make the mission trips about our accomplishments we exclude God and don’t see what He is fully trying to reveal.”
The service trips are part of King’s Global Initiative Program, developed for students to experience life in a different culture and society.
“The learning that occurs on these trips can rarely occur within the classrooms because students often need to be ‘unplugged’ from the noises of our culture so that they can be open to what God is trying to communicate to them,” says Masengi.
King’s Christian Collegiate also had a group travel to Peru that worked with Kids Alive International to help prepare two recently constructed children’s homes in Pachacamac.