Our youth mission team has been hard at work serving others and serving Jesus through the love of Christ. This team was formed about eight years ago by Cindy Yocum-Reule and Pastor Paul Grant. The idea was to get the kids involved in a ministry of serving. The trip is 100 percent funded by free will donations and fundraisers held by the kids and adults in the church. In September of 2015 my husband Jared Nauman and I (Kailea Nauman) became the youth ministers of the First Christian Church Disciples of Christ in Mound City, MO. We went right to work with Cindy’s leadership and guidance to learn about fundraising and having a servant’s heart. She truly is a wonderful example of God’s love.
These kids fundraise all year - eight to ten fundraisers for the year. They make dinners, host movie nights, have talent shows and skits portraying the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We have served in our community to raise funds, had bake sales, and hosted children’s games at the local flea market. They will clean yards and paint houses. They work hard all year to raise money to go serve somewhere they are needed, and give that money to those who need it. It truly is an inspiring thing to be a part of and watch these kids grow in their faith and love for serving, and their love for Christ. Last year they raised over $8,000.00 dollars to go to Houston, TX to help with hurricane relief. Our kids range from age 12 to 18 and we always have a handful of adults that go as well. Last year there were 15 people that went.
What we are trying to do is center it more around family mission trips. We want all ages to want to go. If we could get young parents involved and have them bring their small children, we would be raising a generation of kids that have the value of serving others with the love of Christ ingrained on their heart from an early age. There are so many jobs they could help with; we just have to be willing to teach them. Our prayer is that this will pick up in the next few years. We will be taking our 8-year-old daughter and our 14-year-old daughter with us this year. We have talked about heading to Panama City for Hurricane Michael relief, but we are still praying and fundraising.
Our church would be willing to give us the funds to go on the mission trip, but we want the kids to see what the value of hard work is and when you are serving and someone thanks you for what you did, these kids know they truly had a part in raising that money and they did it for a good cause. It allows them to feel like they truly did make a difference and that is what keeps them coming back every year.
The mission work we do is truly a blessing to us as well as to those we serve. It is humbling and beautiful to be a part of. This year my husband and I will be leading the mission team and it is not without help and guidance from the wonderful church ladies that have for the last 7 years done a wonderful job of teaching these kids and adults to serve with a heart for Jesus. Without their love and guidance, we could not and would not know where to begin. We are blessed to have them in our church family and to call them our friends as well.
Kailea Nauman, Youth Minister
First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Mound City, MO (816) 752-9593