“I Am Redeemed” by Benji Cowart,
Michael Weaver, Michael David Weaver
I am redeemed, You set me free
So I'll shake off theses heavy chains
Wipe away every stain
now I'm not who I used to be
I am redeemed.”
What a joy it was to sing these words with 150 youth and their leaders gathered here for URBAN PLUNGE: a weekend of worship, service and community among groups from fourteen different churches. Seeking to find “the common” with those they served and those serving with them, youth volunteered at numerous organizations, including Habitat for Humanity and Mosaic Thrift Store in Benton Harbor; the Homeless Shelter and Clothes Closet in Decatur; Wings of God and Eleanor's Pantry in Paw Paw; and Animal Rescue Project, YMCA, Gospel Mission, Ministry with Community, Douglas Community Center and The Free Store, all in Kalamazoo.
Youth also packed boxes for Operation Christmas Child, made blankets for Project Linus, and spent a most enjoyable
afternoon visiting with residents at White Oaks Assisted Living in Lawton. One of the many highlights of the weekend for me was seeing youth from different churches connecting with one another, and getting to know the folks at White Oaks while playing games, doing puzzles, coloring and giving manicures.
Thanks again to CE Director Wendy Mickle and all who helped make this weekend a memorable and uplifting experience for so many. May the spirit of giving and serving ignited by these youth carry on with us all in this Advent season!