Tuesday, August 30, 2011

    Want To Take an Urban Mission Trip?

    Looking for an opportunity to involve your youth in an inner-city mission experience? 

    In the "old days," I usually didn't start thinking about our summer mission trip until sometime in January. But these events have become such a staple of youth programs that I find most youth  leaders start planning next summer's trip as soon as they return from this summer's trip! With that in mind, we offer you a few recommendations for urban mission opportunities in our city of St. Louis.

    The Urban Mission Inn - This ministry is hosted at Union Avenue Christian Church (Brian's church) and offers dedicated space for groups of 20+ people.  Housing area includes bunkbeds, air mattresses, showers, full kitchen, and meeting space. In addition, the ministry offers to help schedule mission projects for your group.  In the summer of 2011, over 400 youth and adults were hosted at the Urban Mission Inn. Coming in 2012: All groups will be provided with a complete urban mission and justice educational resource to help you prepare for your trip, debrief your experiences during your trip, and extend the experience once you return home.

    The Urban Mission Experience - This ministry is located at Epiphany United Church of Christ on the southside of St. Louis. They provide sleeping space, offsite showers, and a full kitchen. In addition, they will help groups set up mission projects and offer a poverty simulation. 

    The Bridge - This ministry, connected with Centenary Methodist Church,  provides a host of services to homeless persons.  They also offer volunteer opportunities for youth and space to host mission groups (whether your group chooses to serve at The Bridge or not) as well as an impactful educational experience on homelessness called "The Walk." 

    Looking for an inner city mission experience beyond St. Louis?  We can't recommend more strongly The Center for Student Missions. With locations around the country (and one in Canada) this faith-based organization welcomes all denominations and offers housing, meals, a full schedule of urban ministry volunteer projects, and a host who travels with your group throughout your stay. 


    Andy Beck said...

    Our group worked with Urban Ministry Experience this summer. It was a wonderful trip. They are very organized and worked to match our group with opportunities to fit our group strengths. I highly recommend UME for a group work/mission trip.

    Benjer said...

    One more vote here for Center for Student Missions. Did a trip through them this summer, and they are a great organization that works with solid ministries that are already on the ground in those cities.

    Brian, the link for CSM goes to The Bridge, however.

    Eric Murray said...

    Another excellent urban mission is the WOW Urban Ministry found in Knoxville, Tennessee. WOW is a Christ focused, youth led ministry - providing faith formation, leadership development, and service opportunities - in creative collaboration to build a strong, loving community. For more information you can check:

    Chris Mikesell said...

    Hey Brian, I have been trying to get ahold of you to connect about the Urban Inn. I got a call from someone at your church today and I was going to email you but I couldn't find it on the website. Will you please email me at Chris@impactkc.com I would love to talk about bringing my students to serve March 12-16.

    My name is Chris Mikesell

    Thank you

    Brian Kirk said...

    Thank, Benjer. It's fixed now.