Adult and Family Mission Trip

by Chris Hardman 

At our adult forum a few weeks ago, Sister Alicia Torres outlined her understanding of Franciscan Spirituality in a most energetic way. All of us were captivated by her enthusiasm as well as her heartfelt way of living out the Gospel Life. One particular quote of hers stuck with me. She said something like this: it is a Gospel mandate to serve the poor and that is not negotiable. We are called to serve God not with just our gifts, but with ourselves." If you take that biblical mandate seriously like she does, do I have something for you-a mission trip to the Lakota and Dakota tribes in North Dakota!

We have been looking for an overseas adult mission trip for several years now, but with the present political climate in foreign countries, we decided to look at home. The Episcopal Diocese of North Dakota has a number of opportunities for us to help the Native American tribes in North Dakota and for them to help us!

Standing Rock Reservation is just south of Bismarck, and is one of the poorest areas in America. Our plan is to build one or more wooden decks for the small 9 by 20 foot trailers they call home. This will increase their living space, as well as provide a way to connect them to electricity and plumbing. In turn, they will teach us about their history, their native spirituality, and welcome us to a regional Pow Wow. Our work will be centered in the town of Cannonball which is adjacent to their diocesan retreat center. The Rev. John Floberg, Rector of St. James Episcopal Church, will be our guide. This mission trip is not only for adults; it can be for families as well.

If this sounds interesting to you, please join us at 10:35 a.m. on Sunday, January 17th, following the baptismal celebration in the library. We will begin to discuss dates and possibilities. If you cannot make the meeting, but are still interested, please let me know at