Youth Mission Trip

It is with a heart full of sadness that I must share that our Mission Trip this summer has been postponed until next year. We will be going to Noxen in June of 2021.
I recently received an email from the RCA Short Term Mission team recommending that all mission trips planned, nationally and globally, on or before June 30 be cancelled or postponed due to the pandemic. This is not Noxen specific, but the decision made by the RCA was for all short term missions work to be cancelled; and in the best interest of everyone’s health New Hope Church will adhere to the recommendations set by the RCA.
Their recommendation came at a time where I, along with my trusted staff and active volunteers, began discussing the intricacies of what our mission trip this year would look like if we were to move forward with our plan to serve the community of Noxen this summer.  
There are many reasons why going to Noxen is not the wisest decision at this time. However, the greatest reason I believe we NEED to share with our youth who are disappointed is this:

Service is most simply  defined as a helpful activity. The best way to serve those in Noxen, our most helpful activity, is to stay home.

Why and how? What we know about Covid-19 is that many who have this virus are asymptomatic, still shedding the disease, and unknowingly transmitting it to others.  As Dr. Acton also stated, “The virus is slow to present itself and quick to spread.” 

With that said, I cannot risk the health and safety of your children, your families, and those in the Noxen community. Noxen is an incredibly impoverished area, with less than adequate healthcare available to people if they were to get sick.  I continue to speak with Jim Lane, our contact in Noxen, and he tells me the closest hospital to them is overrun with Covid-19 patients.
Our best for them is to stay home and pray for them and their community. Our best for them is to not  potentially and unknowingly bring this virus into their community. In discussing this decision with Jim Lane his response was, “Wow, I feel relieved! This is the right thing to do. We’ve made the best decision for this year. Better days ahead. Noxen prayer is powerful, and we’re going to lay it on heavy.”

**Seniors, you are not forgotten. We are brainstorming ways to celebrate you and include you in future decisions and activities. I will keep you posted! But we will have a Senior Blessing for our beloved seniors. It may be in August, but we will have that time together.**

Noxen, PA 2018

Whitesburg, KY 2017