Youth Mission Trip to Guatemala

Two members of our high school youth, Charlotte Hecht and Madison Platt, along with Chet Hecht, Director of Outreach, Fellowship and Family Ministries, will participate in the Diocesan Youth Mission Trip to Guatemala later this week. They will be joined by Katie Fisher, from St. John’s-Indio.

The trip, called “To Guatemala with Love,” is being led by Charlette Preslar, the Diocesan Youth Missioner. When asked about the trip, she said, “The youth who are going on this trip really are leaders, so the main thing that I’m looking forward to on the trip is watching them grow and foster relationships in a new country. My job is to support them as they take this journey.” She added that the projects that the youth will be working on in Guatemala will be construction-based, possibly building new structures or repairing existing ones. They’ll know more about what they’re doing when they arrive, as it is a needs-based program.

A volcano erupted in Guatemala a few weeks ago, but it occurred in an area far away from where the youth are going, so it will have no effect on the mission trip, and there is no danger to our youth from the volcanic activity.

When asked what she was most looking forward to, Charlotte Hecht said, “I’m looking forward to the connections that I’m going to make with everybody while we are doing our service. It’s really going to bring us together as a community.” She also said this is her first time traveling outside the United States and she’s very excited about going to a new country.

Madison Platt has been to Central America, but this is her first trip to Guatemala. She said she’s looking forward to “working with my fellow youth, getting to experience what it’s like to be on a mission trip, and seeing the difference that we’re making in the lives of the people we are going to serve.” She also stated that she believes this trip will help her grow in her faith and she hopes this isn’t her only mission trip!

The third local mission participant, Katie Fisher from St. Johns-Indio, echoed many of Charlotte’s and Madison’s thoughts about the trip. Katie said, “I’m looking forward to the service work that we will be doing and having my understanding of the world expand as I meet new people and to see how they live their lives each day.”

On April 8, the entire youth delegation came to St. Margaret’s to hold pancake breakfast as a fundraiser for the trip. It was very successful, and the youth want to thank St. Margaret’s for the amazing support they provided. The youth had the opportunity to meet and interact with the parishoners during the breakfast. Calvin Peckham, from Christ Church-Coronado, said that he has been to Belize but not Guatemala and added, “I’m looking forward to helping out people in need. That’s the main thing.” Angel Hernandez, from St. Luke’s-North Park, has also been to Central America previously, but it’s also his first trip to Guatemala. Angel said, “I’m just looking forward to helping others in need.”

Each of the participants were asked about their Spanish skills. Most of them answered the same way as Charlotte, “It’s OK. I’m taking Spanish in school so I know a little bit, but I’m nowhere close to fluent.” Katie said, “I’ve been taking Spanish classes for five years. I can probably read and write it, but my speaking can definitely use some work.”

The delegation leaves on June 22, and the trip will last eight days. During this time, we ask that everyone hold our youth and their adult leaders up in prayer as they set out to Change the World.

Buena suerte y buen viaje.

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