Have you ever seen the stories of people going on mission trips to far away places in other countries and thought, “That would be great but I don't have the money to join that trip,” or “I like the idea of going on a mission trip, but travelling that far makes me nervous”?

This introduction turned into reality the week of August 11-17, 2019 for a group from the United Methodist Congress of the Deaf and the Evangelical Lutheran Deaf Association. The main crew from UMCD traveled for ten days and 2100 from Dallas to the Red Bird Mission camp and back home. “We give God thanks for all that we experienced on this mission, recognizing that there's more to a mission than just the direct action of repairing a home, or leading a devotional, there's also the mystery of what happens inside the person receiving and giving aid, and what happens to relationships within a team.”

The Appalachian mountain area of the USA faces a great deal of poverty and often people need assistance with everything from home repairs to education to health needs. The Red Bird Mission is a ministry of The United Methodist Church in Beverly, Kentucky that provides a variety of service and support to people in this area of our country. They host teams throughout the year that do basic construction work to help make needed repairs to people's homes. They also have projects on their mission site for people who can't do construction work. Youth and families are particularly welcome!

Read Bishop Peggy Johnson's article for the Eastern Pennsylvania Annual Conference, which includes links to a PowerPoint presentation.
Read our blog post about the trip, which was featured by UM News.

Here is a selection of photos from the trip. You can find more at the Red Bird Mission Facebook group

photos: Tom Hudspeth, Michelle Menefee

entire group poses on a hillside
smaller group poses in a parking area
people gather on the porch of a red building
four people install a washing machine
a group works on a yard and sidewalk
a group lifts a large board, behind is a door above ground level
people gather around a table, ready to eat
people install a new floor
a woman speaks and signs with a projected picture about the mission behind her
a group signs I Love You around a communion table
Bishop Johnson and Michelle Menefee on a stage
a woman on the stage signs Kirk Van Gilder on stage, signing

We also have the original Information sheet Microsoft Word and Brochure Acrobat PDF from the pre-trip materials.