agyqiyd · 2021-03-12

Teens preparing for mission to Nicaragua

A group of local teens will be heading overseas this spring to help individuals in need.

Trent and Erin Simons, family ministry pastors for Covenant Christian Community Church, will be leading the team of 13 high school students from the Midland-Penetanguishene area to San Francisco, Nicaragua, to help build a roof for a local church and run afternoon camps for children.

The team has spent the past six months getting ready for the May trip. Members meet monthly for orientation meetings. They have been hard at work learning Spanish, working on teamwork, raising funds and learning about the country they will be visiting.

Trent Simons said he is hoping the trip – which will be the first journey to a Third World country for the youths – will expand their horizons and increase their awareness of issues such as poverty that have such a huge impact in other parts of the world.

“Raising awareness is a really big piece of it,” he said. “We’re also hoping to bring the love of God to this community and … work with the church and (hang) out with the kids down there.”

Many of the youths going on the trip – who will range in age from 14 to 18 – have been participating for the last several years in smaller adventures to downtown Toronto and Montreal, where they have been working at homeless shelters.

However, this will be the first time the church will be leading an international trip of this nature, noted Simons.

“The kids have responded very positively to those (smaller) trips. They’ve talked about how they have learned a lot about the people and breaking down the stereotypes of homeless people and marginalized people,” he said. “Many of them that are going on this trip have been on these other trips, as well, so they keep coming back for more.”

nmillion@simcoe.com