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S: IsleGo...Will you?

BC: IsleGo...Will you? | "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”" Acts 1:8

FC: Jamaica Mission Trip St. Ann's Bay July 16-23, 2011

1: Saturday morning our team of 29 arrived at the church at 6am ready to load our luggage and head to the airport. Everything went smoothly and after prayer we were on the road before 6:30am. We arrived at the airport, checked our luggage, grabbed breakfast, and headed to our gate. We landed in Montego Bay, Jamaica around 1:00pm. After getting our luggage and making it through customs, we waited on the curb outside of the airport for our ride. One bus came for our luggage and one came for us. The bus sat four across because of an aisle seat that would fold out. Throughout our week in Jamaica, we managed to pack all 29 of us (plus some) on the bus wherever we went. Fun times! We arrived in St.Ann's Bay at the Chillin' Villas- our home for the next week. We were shocked by how nice they were. We met our leader for the week, Mrs. Betty from Mississippi, and after she told us where we were all staying and what time dinner was we headed off to drop our luggage and relax by the pool. We had a meeting with Mrs. Betty before dinner to go over the guidelines and itinerary for the week. All of our meals for the week were prepared by wonderfully sweet Jamaican ladies that would get there before 7 every morning to start preparing our meals for the day. Our kitchen staff at the villas included: Nadine, Veta, Carol, Marlene, and Theresa.

2: Chillin' Villas | G r e g o r y | Carol, Nadine, Theresa, Veta, and Malrone

3: On Sunday, we had the opportunity to worship with the Jamaicans at St. Ann's Baptist Church. It was a truly wonderful worship experience with older and younger people of different races worshiping together with the common bond of Christ. The service lasted for almost 3 hours with no air conditioning and although the wooden pews felt very hard after a few hours, it was well worth it to worship with the sweet Jamaican lady sitting beside me. After church, we went back to the villas for lunch and had the afternoon to go to the beach. Everybody that had snorkel gear brought it and we got to go snorkeling. It was something I had never experienced before and it was absolutely beautiful to see God's creation so up close. We got to see schools of brightly colored fish, flounder, sting rays, hermit crabs, and I even got to hold a sea urchin! After the beach, we went back to the pool for a little while before dinner.

4: Snorkeling in the Caribbean Sea! | Me, Shannon, Kirby, Jodi | Me, Shannon, Kirby | Jodi, Me

5: Bright and early Monday morning, we headed to work in Steertown/Seville. Our mission there was to work alongside the Jamaicans to help them build a community center. The work was hard and it was hot, but it was such an awesome experience. We got to shovel dirt and rocks by the wheelbarrow load that we would then mix into concrete. Once the concrete was mixed, we would fill up buckets that would be passed along a "bucket" line to the place they needed to be poured. Not only did we get to do construction work, but we also were able to form friendships with the Jamaicans that would come to the work site to help us. Among the people we met and worked alongside were Big John (82 years old), Richard (in charge), Bryan, Mr. Brown, Rocky, Tips (14 years old), O'Shane (17 years old), Brandon (8 years old), Devante (9 years old), and Papa (5 years old). Every day, Domain would bring us frozen bag/bug juice that was such a treat and came at just the right time (like manna from heaven)! The work site was such a wonderful time to work hard and form relationships with the Jamaicans as well as those on the team.

6: Steertown/Seville (Town where we helped build a community center) | Papa | Brandon | Devante | Karis, Papa, Kelsey, Tips, Me, and Brandon | The Team

7: Jodi and I in our matching Be the Church shirts | More Steertown... | Me, Tips, Kirby, and O'Shane | Papa | The Team

8: Each afternoon, we would go to a church in a community called Hermitage up in the mountains. Some of the team would help a few men from the church build a kitchen addition while others would play soccer with some of the local boys, play with the kids, or visit with the women. The first afternoon, Mrs. Norma (a sweet church lady) took us out visiting in the community. We visited and prayed over people who were sick or we just talked and fellowshiped with them. What sweet and beautiful people they are!! On Tuesday afternoon, we went to the St. Ann's Bay Infirmary where we visited, prayed, and sang with many of the people living there. While it was difficult to see the suffering of the people in the infirmary (many of them their only prayer was that they would walk again), it was also a blessing to see how much they smiled even in the midst of their circumstances. A young man (age 21) named Ryan got to come back to the Villas with us that night for dinner. At the age of 5 he was diagnosed with cancer and the doctor who was supposed to operate died leaving Ryan with no legs. On Wednesday afternoon, a group of us got to go on home visits to deliver food baskets. We visited Dr. Eta, who had broken her leg and hadn't been able to walk for over a year, and Yuda Lynn, who had 6 kids. After home visits, we got to go back to the church and play with the little girls and visit with Mrs. Norma.

9: H E R M I T A G E | Akeela | Satanya | Shavelle | Bus ride

10: Hermitage | Mrs. Norma | Satanya | Beauty Parlor | J a m i e

11: Hermitage | Mrs. Kelly (yellow shirt & hat), Dr. Eta (black dress) | S h a v e l l e | Satanya and Akeela | J a m i e

12: A mom and her 6 children that Mr. Don and Mr. Jeff built bunk beds for. The other team built the house on the right for them. | The Market | Dancing with Red and Domain in the market | Uncle | Our bus driver for the week

13: Friday was our free day to go to town. We walked around the different shops and went to the city market where we browsed the booths and haggled with the people selling their goods. We went to the Jerk House for lunch and had some really yummy jerk food. In the afternoon, we went to Dunn's River Falls where we got to climb the water fall. The falls were beautiful and so much fun to climb that some of us did it twice. What a wonderful example of God's creation crying out to Him and testifying of His glory! | Red and Domain dancing in the market | Eating at the Jerk House

14: DUNN'S RIVER FALLS | For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. Romans 1:20

19: "Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us." Romans 12:4-6a | " The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body." 1 Corinthians 12:12-13a

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