Several groups returned to CSM Philadelphia this Spring break. One of them included Wesley UMC from Selinsgrove, PA. They were one of the first groups that I hosted when I started working with CSM. Dale Long is the leader of this group and has been a consistent supporter of CSM and of Justin and I. Dale has a real heart for service and demonstrates that to his kids on a daily basis.
The youth group has made it a yearly tradition to sleep out in cardboard boxes and raise money for ministries in Philadelphia. The night before Thanksgiving they set up cardboard boxes near one of the main highways in Selinsgrove. The kids said it was rainy and cold but local pizza restaurants brought free pizza and many people stopped to give money and offer support. They even got coverage on a local radio station.
This year they raised around $3500. The group arrived in Philly eager to see who was in need of the money. They were able to give several very generous donations to ministries. It was beautiful to see the excitement on the kids faces when they were able to bless ministries with service and financial support. Many of the ministries were blown away by such unexpected generosity.
This experience gives the youth a small glimpse of what it may be like to live on the streets. They are recognized in their community for doing something radical to help the poor. We are very thankful for the opportunity to serve with Wesley UMC and learn from their desire to help those in need.
Have another idea of how others can serve their community after they go on a CSM trip? Email us!