FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Motown Mission Sets Eight-Year Record
DETROIT, Michigan (August 13, 2012) - In its eighth year as a Christian mission trip destination the Motown Mission Experience has completed its largest service season to date. Between March and August Motown Mission hosted almost 600 participants from 35 churches around the country - a 200 person increase from 2011. Motown Mission, a program of the United Methodist Young Leaders Initiative located in the Detroit Renaissance District, has now contributed over $842,000 in volunteer time and project materials to neighborhoods and ministries across Detroit.
Begun in 2005 as a one week trip for Middle School students from Birmingham First UMC, the Motown Mission Experience has grown into a premier mission destination for United Methodist youth and others. While in Detroit, teams are housed at Metropolitan UMC and work with ministry partners around the city like the Joy-Southfield Community Development Corporation and the NOAH Project. Work projects include home repairs, green deconstruction of vacant buildings, tree planting and urban gardening, feeding work, and helping lead the Metro Kidz Day Camp at Metropolitan UMC.
This year 10 youth groups from Michigan Area churches participated in service weeks along with 11 other UMC groups from as far away as the Dakotas Conference. Fourteen other groups from various Christian churches helped fill out the Summer during which Motown Mission hosted its largest single week ever with 130 participants in mid-July. Plus, another 16 church groups donated and served meals to the Motown participants throughout the season.
Each afternoon Motown work teams were encouraged to explore the City of Detroit through excursions to Belle Isle, the Detroit Institute of Arts, La Gloria Bakery and more. Each evening Motown Mission staff led sessions about the history of Detroit and devotions to help participants connect their hands-on work to our scriptural calling to partner with the poor. Once each week all participants were treated to a Detroit Tigers baseball game or other fun cultural event.
With a grant from the United Methodist Union of Greater Detroit and a Crowdrise.com project that raised over $5,000 the Motown Mission Experience was also able to hire 12 interns to serve as coordinators for this ministry. These college students from around Michigan and beyond led projects, hospitality, and devotional programs during the Summer. They also lived together in an intentional Christian community house in the North End neighborhood of Detroit, and spent Friday afternoons meeting with ministry leaders in order to discern God's call in their lives.
In 2013 Motown Mission will be expanding both its Spring Break and Weekend Mission Trip offerings in order to welcome even more students to Detroit for "economic disaster recovery work in the love of Jesus Christ." For more information about Motown Mission please visit www.motownmission.org
Carl Gladstone, Motown Mission Director