Five youth and two adult chaperones, Jeff Van Natta and the Rev. Diana Otterbacher from Hampshire, recently volunteered at the "Stay" Mission Trip, sponsored by Marengo United Methodist Church, that called for help in cleaning up the former McGill factory site in hopes of using it for a day care and multiuse community center.
The Hampshire team consisted of members from the Zion United Methodist and St. Charles Borromeo Catholic churches, who worked alongside Marengo volunteers. The five-day program was led by Marengo's pastor, Rev. Keck Mowry.
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Otterbacher said, "It had all the important elements of a mission trip, including the worship, Bible study and meeting new people, but it was easier because it required no fundraising, no long drive, and every night we got to sleep in our own beds!"
Because there is still much work to be done, Mowry plans to organize more "stay" missions. Youth groups looking for a mission trip close to home may contact Mowry at (815) 568-7162 or visit marengoumc.org.