Klamath Falls First United Methodist Church, Klamath Falls, OR
When I retired from ministry in the summer of 2018, I knew the thing I would miss the most was taking youth groups to Sierra Service Project every summer. I have not missed a summer since my first SSP trip in 1994. Little did I know this transition would actually allow me to have more involvement with SSP than I had in the past 25 years.
“I am always so inspired to spend time with these young adults, who give me hope for the future.”
My husband Victor and I retired to Klamath Falls, Oregon, just 40 minutes from the SSP Chiloquin site. This past summer I had the privilege of training the Spokane and Chiloqiun Spiritual Life Coordinators, as well as periodically hosting the Chiloquin staff for dinner on weekends. I am always so inspired to spend time with these young adults, who give me hope for the future.
“When youth get the opportunity to take off cool jackets and put on social sweaters, they discover they are beloved children of God.”
I ended up bringing a local sixth grader and a former youth of mine from Placerville to an SSP week in Chiloquin this summer. The sixth grader later told his mom the week had given him the courage to just be who he really was. When youth get the opportunity to take off cool jackets and put on social sweaters, they discover they are beloved children of God. Over and over again, I have seen how getting to pay that love forward by serving in communities like Chiloquin creates beloved community. This is why I am a 12xSSP donor!
Editor’s Note: Helen has supported SSP’s work in a number of ways over many years, from bringing youth groups to volunteer during the summer to training staff. One of the ways she supports SSP is by donating monthly! Join Helen and 176 other 12xSSP monthly donors in sustaining SSP financially, by setting up your own recurring donation.