GREENFIELD — Youth at Trinity Park United Methodist Church have a part of Mission Celebration designed for them: a pizza party with Fellowship of Christian Athletes representative Eric Pangburn from 6 to 8 p.m. Sept. 25.

This year, they come to the annual celebration having done some mission work of their own.

The group traveled to Nashville, Tennessee, in early July. They served with SLAM (Students Living a Mission) in a camp for children and in Hopewell Gardens. The latter is an agricultural site that trains people to grow food in impoverished countries.

Alayna Aldridge helped make pickles “straight from the garden.” But the trip held lessons bigger than that.

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“I learned that if I want to have true success, then I need to follow the rules of God,” she said.

Others also found lessons in the trip.

“My faith grew as I served to help children and widows,” said Isaac Kottlowski. “The mission trip was worth it because it helped me recognize I can be a greater part of God’s work.”

The group has already shared about the trip with other members of the congregation, so there’s no report planned during Mission Celebration, said Phil Strahm, the church’s youth pastor. This is time to shine the spotlight on others’ work.

“We let the guest speakers share about their mission work and then primarily seek to invite people to be a part of it with a Faith Promise Commitment through the year,” he wrote in an email to the Daily Reporter. “Mission trips, local serving, etc., get reported and encouraged throughout the year as a core value of what we do as a church.”

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Anne Smith is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at