A mission trip, in Mississippi | My Family Travels
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Mississippi Mission trip.

When I was 13 I went to Mississippi, on a church mission trip. I live in Kentucky, so I thought that Mississippi would be just the same as Kentucky. Oh boy, was I wrong. The deep south was not only different in food, but in people.

What was my mission in Mississippi?

My youth group doing Vacation bible school for the kids in Pascagoula, Mississippi, it was a very extraordinary experience from the places, seeing the destruction (from the hurricane in previous years), to living in actual southern hospitality. In Kentucky, when you see someone you know, you wave. In Mississippi, you see someone you know, you wave, hug, and invite them to lunch. That’s real Southern hospitality, not the fake, snobby hospitality shown in Berea, Kentucky. On the coasts of the Mississippi, there isn’t a lot of variety of scenery. There’s the beach, and small areas of pine trees. When hurricane Katrina hit, the United States helped for about six months, then pretty much gave up. There was still so much destruction, and so much wreckage. Our GPS system in our van, actually took us to a business that had been destroyed by the hurricane.

 

The kids that the youth group and I taught about God had all lived in Mississippi during hurricane Katrina, it was amazing being able to work with them. These kids had been through so much, from poverty, having their homes destroyed, to losing friends, and family in the hurricane. The truly inspiring and uplifting thing about these kids was how extremely grateful they were for everything they had.

There was this eight -year old boy, named Kevin, and he had a little brother named Kelen. At the end of the week we handed out prizes. Kevin wasn’t really into the whole VBS process, but when we asked questions he knew every answer, he answered two questions the first prize he got, he gave to his little brother. It really made me realize how willing to share and give that these kids were.  Another time with the kids, there was a young girl maybe seven years old, her name was Lakiesha, the last day of VBS, she arrived early and she made every single one of us hemp bracelets.

The youth group had to eat of course, and we all had matching t-shirts. One day in Mississippi, we went to the mall wearing our matching t-shirts, and I had forgotten my money at the place we were staying. A girl in the group said that I could pay her back, so we went and got Mexican food, there was a man who saw our matching t-shirts, talked to us about it and we didn’t know it, but he had paid for our food. In Kentucky, that doesn’t happen, ever. These Mississippi people were a whole new breed of humans. It made me wonder, what the people in my state were doing so wrong.

The food in Mississippi was so much better than anything we had in Kentucky, it tasted better, smelt better, and was the best thing we’d had before in our life, and you may think I’m talking about homemade gumbo, with biscuits and grits, but I’m talking about the Chinese buffet.

In conclusion, Mississippi was the best experience I’ve ever had in my life. The thing was though, when I came home I felt very ungrateful. These people have so little and they act like they had the world at their fingertips. I still have my bracelet, and I still have the memories of Mississippi stored safely in my heart. 

 

 

 

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