Part of the mission of Harvest Community School has always been to take the school’s vision to international locations. This past March marked our fourth school mission trip and third time traveling to the mountains of Buena Vista, Guatemala. Ten high school students and two adults (Pastor Jack Wilcox and Karmen Brooks) embarked on an adventure to another country in order to share the love of Jesus and partner with a local mission’s work in that area. This was the school’s third trip to Guatemala, but first time partnering exclusively with Educate BV, a school located in the small mountain town of Buena Vista.
God has created a unique partnership between Harvest and Educate BV. Mark and Gina Schmidt, the Founders and Directors of Educate BV, used to live in Jacksonville, Florida and were once a part of the Harvest community. In fact, the Wilcox children and Schmidt children were even in some of the same classes. This “God connection” led to an incredible mission trip experience and will continue to enhance the lives of both Harvest and Guatemalan students for years to come.
During the trip, the Harvest team donated ten laptop computers to Educate BV so that students there could continue their advanced studies. The Harvest students also enjoyed spending time getting to know the students in Guatemala while both students practiced communicating in the other’s language. Harvest students visited the homes of some of the Guatemalan students, delivered food baskets, prayed for their families, and put together blessing bags for each student with whom they had been partnered for the week. The highlight of the trip was when the entire team was invited to one student’s home for a wonderful dinner of homemade fried chicken. The love and fellowship shared that evening transcended any language barriers and made a huge impact on everyone’s life. Although the kids were from two completely different cultures and spoke different languages, each group of students came to the realization that they were more the same than they were different.
This year Harvest will again send a team to Guatemala over Spring Break to partner with Educate BV. Without a doubt, it will be another life-changing experience for all involved.
And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.” ~ Isaiah 6:8