MISSION & SERVICE
Where We Have Been
St. Matthew’s latest overnight VIM (Volunteers In Mission) trip took us to Houma, Louisiana, to assist with victims from Hurricane Gustav. We scraped, primed, and painted the home of a single mother. It was hard work, and the weather was not the most cooperative on this trip-we were painting in the sleet one morning. But we also have a lot of fun on these trips; an air boat ride through the swamp was enjoyed by all on our day off. During a week of working together you get to know members of your church family on a more personal level and discover places and people with whom you would never have otherwise come into contact. I do this because I have been blessed and want to do what I can to help others.
Our VIM trips have taken us to various locations in the United States but since Hurricane Katrina five years ago, we have concentrated on the New Orleans area. If you don’t have the extra five days off from work or just aren’t sure about a week long trip, we also have one day VIM opportunities. Last spring a call came from the District Office that the people in the Altus, OK, area needed help with tree limbs after the ice storm. Seven of us loaded up very early on a Saturday and were able to assist five families with tree debris clean up.
If you are not able to participate in physical work, there are also opportunities to assist with mission work through UMCOR (United Methodist Committee On Relief) by donating items for “flood buckets” or “health care kits” or monetarily for victims of disasters such as the earthquake in Haiti or the floods in Pakistan.