Hesston students complete summer service projects

Eva Dwyer – Horizon Staff

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” – Colossians 3:23-24

Several Hesston students took this verse seriously as they completed service assignments all over the United States this summer.

Working in the blazing hot heat of the summer may not sound appealing to most. For several Hesston students, though, the experience was life-changing.

Ali Zuercher, a sophomore from Arizona, served as a servant project leader at the Kansas City MCUSA Convention. Zuercher participated in leading different groups during the week and helping different organizations, while rekindling old relationships and starting new ones. She helped lead in a variety of areas ranging from building a pergola at a men’s homeless shelter to sorting clothes and preparing for a Fourth of July sale. Ali explained that even with the intense heat, there was no complaining.

“They taught me the true meaning of serving with a servant’s heart.”

Jonathan Gonzalez, a sophomore from Indiana, traveled to Crisfield, Maryland with the Hesston College Disaster Management Program. Their group worked alongside Mennonite Disaster Service for eight weeks beginning in the middle of May through the heat of the summer. Gonzalez said that he developed leadership skills while doing construction alongside his peers. He says the group made an impression on community members.

Ali Zuercher served alongside other youth Kansas City. Photo courtesy of Ali Zuercher.
Ali Zuercher served alongside other youth in Kansas City. Photo courtesy of Ali Zuercher.

“Even though they don’t know our names, they’re going to still remember our faces,” Gonzalez said.

Jared Hague, sophomore from Kansas, volunteered in San Marcos, Texas with the Aulne youth group. Hague went to Texas after flooding to help people that couldn’t repair their houses’ water damage on their own. He willingly helped the community with construction and more specifically tearing down moldy drywall and refurbishing it.

Hague said he was amazed by how many people want to help.

“The streets were flooded with volunteers.”

He experienced God through “seeing how passionate people were for helping the less fortunate.”

If you are interested in service experiences, contact Russ Gaeddert, Service Learning Coordinator.

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