Mission trips enable us, as representatives of Fourth Presbyterian Church, to live with and learn from our brothers and sisters from around the world, from Central America to Chicago’s South Side. We share their struggles with hunger and violence. We do what we can to help, but mostly we show that we care.
We also discover that when we break away from our routines, we see new connections and make lasting friendships with each other.
If you are unable to travel, you can still participate in global mission by attending special programs featuring our partners from around the world. Events are announced in the News@FourthChurch e-newsletter (request a subscription via firstname.lastname@example.org) and the Sunday bulletin insert “News and Opportunities.”
Occasionally calls go out for items needed by our hosts, such as medications and church school supplies, which our travelers can take with them. We invite you to consider supporting this aspect of global mission.
The material things, though, are secondary. Invariably our hosts make one request we all can honor: “Pray for us.”
The Fourth Church Mission Committee invites you to explore the spiritual adventures described here, to open your heart and answer the call.
Guatemala: July 6–14, 2013
United States Trip
Urban Plunge | Regeneration: Chicago: May 17–19, 2013
Mission Team Expectations | Application Forms | Contact
Read about the 2012 Urban Plunge trip
2013 International Mission Trip
July 6–14, 2013
Supporting families in their dreams
This mission trip to Guatemala during the summer of 2013 will provide the opportunity to support families through the many programs of support offered by Common Hope. Common Hope serves people through education, health care, social work, and housing. Mission teams will work in small groups with Common Hope staff, who will provide language translation along with the trip leaders. Participants may visit families with a social worker in a local community, help construct a simple home, or sort emergency food supplies in a warehouse. Each evening includes time for prayer and reflection.
Accommodations are at Common Hope’s project site in comfortable dormitory-style facilities with clean showers and plenty of safe drinking water. Common Hope is located in Antigua, the beautiful colonial capital of Guatemala. Meals blend traditional Guatemalan cuisine and typical American fare.
Weekend and after-work hours, activities take place in or near Antigua. There will be opportunities to experience the culture and history of Guatemala. Take a volcano hike with a coffee farmer to his land and learn about the effects of the long civil war on his family. Spend a day in Antigua, shopping in the market or learning about the region’s heritage.
Trip leaders: Tom Schemper, Director of the Lorene Replogle Counseling Center
and Sue Schemper, Spiritual Director
Nature of trip: Building relationships; projects with the community
Age range: Thirteen and up; those age thirteen to eighteen should be
accompanied by an adult who is at least twenty-one years old
Group size: Fourteen persons
Estimated cost: $2,400 per person; 12 and under is $800 less than adults
Web resource: www.commonhope.org
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2013 United States Mission Trip
Urban Plunge | Regeneration: Chicago
May 17–19, 2013
Working and worshiping in the Woodlawn neighborhood
When First Presbyterian Church was founded in 1833, Chicago consisted of a fort and a few log cabins. First Church leaders saw an urgent need to address social and spiritual needs of the time. Part of this commitment called for the seeding of additional Presbyterian churches, including Fourth Presbyterian Church. The First Church commitment to social ministry has endured a long and winding path, tracing the very history of some of the city’s more impoverished neighborhoods. The commitment of First Presbyterian Church lives on today in the Woodlawn neighborhood.
This weekend provides a special opportunity for members, families, and friends of both Fourth Church and First Church to work and share together and support each other in an ongoing relationship centered around fun and productive work projects.
- work together doing building maintenance and spring cleanup on the historic grounds of First Church (6400 S. Kimbark )
- learn how First Church works with Angelic Organics and other organizations and groups to improve local access to fresh, healthy food
- share a meal and Sunday morning worship with the First Church congregation
Friday, May 17: Dinner and orientation at First Presbyterian Church
Saturday, May 18: All day work projects and fellowship
Sunday, May 19: Worship with our friends at First Presbyterian Church
Trip leader: Stanley Smith
Nature of trip: Productive work projects and relationship building
Age range: Intergenerational; those under eighteen should be accompanied
by an adult
Group size: Open
Estimated cost: $40 per person (for meals and work project supplies)
Register by filling out an online form.
Web resource: www.firstpreschicago.org, www.learngrowconnect.org
Read about the 2012 Urban Plunge
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Mission Team Expectations
God calls us to receive and share the love of Jesus Christ, a love that crosses all cultural, geographic, economic, and generational boundaries. Mission trips provide opportunities for serving, learning, advocacy, peacemaking, spiritual inspiration, and building relationships and cross-cultural awareness.
As we interact with brothers and sisters from around the world, we honor their dignity and show respect through mutuality, learning and receiving from them while giving support in solidarity. It is essential for us to follow their lead and wisdom on addressing the quality of life and witness of faith in their context.
Mission trip participants are asked to bring an open and humble mind of a beginner.
- Reflective worship is an important part of every trip.
- Mission trips start well before the date of departure and extend beyond our return home. All participants are expected to participate in orientations, trip-related activities, and debriefing and post-trip activities. Articles or books may be recommended reading.
- Mission team members need to be flexible, cooperative, and positive, supporting the team leaders and our hosts as they need to adapt to unexpected circumstances and changes in plans.
- Accommodations are purposely modest to lower the cost of the trip and to benefit from the hospitality of our hosts.
- Estimated costs include airfare, most meals, lodging, ground transportation, and in some cases a contribution toward the project or people served. Actual costs may vary depending on changes in airfare and the number of participants who register.
- Each team member must pay a 50% deposit of fees by the stated deadline, $100 of which is nonrefundable. Limited scholarships may be available upon request.
- Unless stated otherwise, persons of all ages and abilities are welcome to apply.
- For international trips, you must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond your return date. A copy of the first two pages of the passport must be submitted with trip applications.
For more information, please contact Vicky Curtiss, Associate Pastor for Mission, at 312.981.3598.
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An online application form is available here;
or a PDF of the application form to download is available here.
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For More Information
Contact Vicky Curtiss
Associate Pastor for Mission, Fourth Presbyterian Church
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