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Wesleyan’s Mission Trip Team Serves in South Africa

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The Wesleyan Mission Trip team has been serving in South Africa for years and each year the trip impacts even more people than before. This year’s team, led by Mr. Lisson, Dr. Pinkett-Smith, Mrs. Hemken, Mr. Russell and Ms. Stephenson, traveled from Atlanta to Johannesburg for a two week trip filled with service.

When they arrived in Johannesburg, they stayed at an organization called Impact Africa, which provides ministry and creates jobs for local South Africans. From the start, they knew their trip was going to be extremely beneficial both for them and the people they were serving.

The many activities and worship sessions kept the team busy for the whole trip. While in Johannesburg, the team walked through townships, shared the gospel with people, played with different groups of preschool children and run two days of Vacation Bible School. Many students’ favorite moments came from their time at VBS. Junior Sydney Stirling said, “Doing VBS for the community was definitely a high point from my trip, and I will never forget the joy I brought to them.” Lisson said, “I think the highlight for me was a worship night we had on Wednesday night. It was the first moment I realized just how far we had come in the few days we had been together.”

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Wesleyan Mission Team Serves in South Africa

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    (Pictured from left to right) Elise Harper, Megan Gallagher and Peter Hess make new friends during their time in a township. Whitney Panetta.
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    Annie Cowart plays with children in Diepsloot during VBS. Emily Zavitz
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    (Pictured from left to right) Greg Lisson, Abbie Blauser and Chloe Hangartner enjoy interacting with the lion cubs at the Lion & Safari Park in Gauteng, South Africa. Emily Zavtiz.
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    Children enjoy field games in Johannesburg, South Africa. Emily Zavitz.
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    The South Africa missions team enjoys playing ultimate frisbee during their free time. Emily Zavtiz.

Just weeks after the 2016-2017 school year ended, the South Africa Mission team, led by Elizabeth Ables, Whitney Panetta, Greg Lisson, Andrea Shupert and Emily Zavitz, embarked on their 15-hour-journey across the Atlantic Ocean to Johannesburg, South Africa. Upon arrival, they were greeted by the welcoming staff of Godfirst City Church, their host for the week. After a long bus ride to Hoopoe Haven, a local bed and breakfast where the team stayed throughout the week, they unpacked and settled in. Jet-lagged yet excited, the team was ready to serve.

Children line up to play games during VBS. Whitney Panetta.

From day one, the team was put to work making maternity packs with the Grace Project, writing encouraging notes and packaging supplies for mothers who might not have anything. The following day, the team visited the township, Zandspruit, and partnered with Impact Africa, participating in door-to-door evangelism throughout the town. In South Africa, townships are informal settlements consisting mostly of shacks without running water, plumbing or any of the basic American amenities we take for granted. For many students, this experience was the most powerful of the entire trip.

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2017 Mission Trips Revealed

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    Senior Morgan Keller spends time with a refugee in Atlanta.Morgan Keller
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    Kids in Jamaica play on a slide built for them. Kids Around the World
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    Girls wear traditional dresses in Ecuador. Alex Bufton
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    Kids sit at a school in Mikarios, Dominican Republic. Makarios.
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    The kids in Nicaragua try to break open the piñata. Charis Thompson.
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    Seniors Emily Greer and Barret Ramsey play with kids in the Dominican Republic. Emily Greer
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    Seniors Noah Young and Georgia Kuehn assist with dental work in Guatemala. Georgia Kuehn

Mission trips are some of the most unique experiences offered at Wesleyan. Each trip is different. All of them take place over spring break with the exception of a biannual summer trip. They are available to seniors, juniors and sophomores, with trip options varying each year.

Here is the complete list of mission trips offered for 2017.

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