Moments after they left, she ran out the door after them. It sunk in that they had brought a gift basket to her shop, and she wanted to say something before they were gone.

“She said, ‘This is the nicest thing anyone’s ever done,” Samantha Young recalls. “That right there, that one moment — it was worth it.”

Young was part of a group from Realife Church that traveled to Edinburgh, Scotland, in late April. During the trip, they helped Bridge Family Church in downtown Edinburgh with outreach events. They cleaned and organized as the church continues a series of renovations and works toward opening a cafe to the community. And the team worshiped with the congregation as it celebrated baptisms.

“We were out there, a lot of us, cheering people on,” Young said. As they stood in an outdoor courtyard, gathered around a round inflatable pool, their applause drew the attention of people in a nearby building. “They were looking out the window,” she said.

In a post on its Facebook page, the church expressed gratitude for the team’s visit: “… they worked SO HARD! The team cleaned, organized, built, stripped paint, and sowed lots of love into our community! 100 park plants potted, 300 door to door invites, 3 baptisms, 30 local business baskets … in 6 days!”

Realife senior pastor Adam Detamore also had positive words for the Bridge congregation. He spoke in its April 21 service.

“Preaching at the Bridge Family Church in Scotland was an immense honor,” Detamore wrote in an email. “Witnessing their unwavering commitment to bringing Jesus to a very post-Christian culture firsthand was inspiring. Their dedication to faith amidst secular challenges left a profound impact on me and reinforced the power of their ministry and of the Gospel.”

Bridge is a smaller congregation, Young said, with a homelike atmosphere. Members may gather after church for soup or push aside chairs on a Saturday night for a family-friendly evening of folk dancing.

One woman sees it as her ministry to often feed the group. Young remembers trying a hand-held meat pie she had made, one bursting with flavor: “You could just tell it was made with love.”

This was Young’s first mission trip, so going to a place where people speak English seemed like a good fit. This was also Taryn Smith’s first mission trip, and a good fit for a different reason. After a student mission team trip to El Salvador didn’t fit with her schedule, the Greenfield-Central High School senior looked into the Scotland trip, which she said lined up with her school schedule.

“It’s one of those things where, when it works out that well, it’s undeniable it’s the one to be on,” said Smith (no relation to the writer of this story).

Smith saw the blend of old and new in Edinburgh, where businesspeople and university students go about their days amid a backdrop of cobblestone streets and centuries-old cathedrals. She found the city’s people a mix, too.

As she chatted with people in a park during an outreach event, “They were all there studying, or they had moved there,” she said. “It was very cool to see how different everybody’s background was. … A lot of them weren’t from Edinburgh, or Scotland even.”

At that gathering, Realife and Bridge people invited children in the park to choose a succulent to plant and decorate the pot. This was Smith’s favorite part of the trip. While children planted, parents talked, and she enjoyed seeing the diversity of people who live in Edinburgh.

Though a pastor there told the team only about 2 percent of Scotland is Christian, the team worked to let people know the church is in the community. They delivered gift baskets to businesses that included a book on leadership, chocolates, a bottled drink and information about the church. They also handed out chocolates and invitations in the park and some door-to-door visits.

“We planted a seed,” Smith said, “and it will be watered.”