Trip to Puerto Rico energizes FBC Lee’s Summit
August 23, 2005
LEE’S SUMMIT – First Baptist Church, Lee’s Summit, sent a group of 60 youth and adults to Fajardo, Puerto Rico, on a mission trip recently for seven days of mission work.
La Iglesia Baustista Evangelica de la Palabra, in Fajardo, averages around 100 in Sunday worship. There were several opportunities for the Missouri Baptist short-term missionaries to serve the Puerto Rican church.
One rainy afternoon, they boarded a school bus and ended up at an elementary school to paint 10 classrooms. Six hours later, the job was done. It saved the school an estimated $4,000 in paint and labor.
Other Lee’s Summit teens went to a shelter for sexually abused teens in Fajardo and helped clear a playground with lots of high grass. Another group picked up trash at Luquillo Beach. Others handed out Gospel tracts in Spanish.
Worship times were special. Energy and passion were present, said Richard Caldwell, minister of youth and recreation, First Lee’s Summit. Often at night, some Puerto Ricans would pick up a guitar and a saxophone as the group formed a circle. Echoes of praise would bounce off the chapel walls and into the warm night air.
He said the mission trip was a tremendous blessing.
“It challenged our patience and reliance on God. He taught us the importance of fellowship. He showed us the benefits of a hard day’s work. He freed our group from its inhibitions that confined worship to one outlet. He built friendships that will last beyond our lifetime,” Caldwell said.
First Lee’s Summit is in partnership with First Baptist Church, California, and First Baptist Church, Lake St. Louis, with the Fajardo church. All three churches have sent groups to the island, including adult and youth choirs as well as youth groups for camp and mission work.