ACU to send 600 students to 36 locations on Spring Break Campaigns
For immediate release
"In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:16
Abilene Christian University students will be taking this theme verse to heart for the 2003 student-led Spring Break Campaigns March 9-14.
This 26-year-old ACU tradition will send approximately 600 students to 36 different locations to perform community service and volunteer with local churches over the ACU Spring Break.
Spring Break Campaigns are student-led mission trips where students spend their spring break and raise their own funds to travel to a location to serve the Lord through service to others, said Mark Lewis, director of spiritual life and student ministries. The student leaders participate in extensive leadership training and organize regular meetings for their members to focus each campaign on its purpose and to help prepare the students for ministry work.
"There are a lot of hard hours that go into the planning and execution of a campaign," said Sarah Wilhite, leader of the Bozeman, Montana campaign and a junior integrated marketing communication major from Midland. "But when you see your fellow students working side-by-side for the Lord, it is all worth it."
The campaigns team-up with churches, organizations and cities to organize ministry opportunities for each location. Activities range from serving meals at shelters and soup kitchens to teaching Bible studies for young children at church daycare facilities.
New Orleans, The Bronx in New York City, Denver, Honolulu and Montana are just a few of the campaign destinations.
However, not all campaigns are domestic. Many students will travel abroad to six different locations over the break including Slovenia and the Dominican Republic.
All campaigns are open to all ACU students who sign up to participate. Sign-ups begin in the fall semester. Most campaigns take an even number of males and females with the exception of two specialty campaigns, which are focused on each gender. This year there are also two "Seek and Follow" campaigns - trips that purposely do not have a planned destination. Students attending these campaigns depend on their faith in the Lord to guide them to a specific place for a specific purpose.
Twenty of the groups are flying to their locations while 16 are taking the old fashioned route, by car. A five-student committee and one faculty mentor, spiritual life and student ministries director Mark Lewis, chose the following mission statement to help spiritually focus the students on their ministry work over the break:
"To become the hands of Christ in service, the feet which bring good news, the arms which comfort the poor in spirit, and to come together as the body of Christ, whose life gives life to the whole world."
In 1977, the first Spring Break Campaign, led by Steve Green ('77) and Max Lucado ('77), left Abilene headed for a week in Iowa.
"Spring Break Campaigns are a powerful ministry opportunity that many students claim as one of the best experiences of their college career," Lewis said. "Even more than the campaigns' impact on students, the trips affect the lives of those that the students come in contact with. As long as the servant spirit is alive on the ACU campus, students will continue to sacrifice their time and money to touch the lives of people they have never met."
For more information regarding Spring Break Campaigns, call the Students' Association office at 915-674-2201, Lewis at 915-674-2932 or visit the campaign web site at www.acu.edu/students/sa/home/spring_break_campaigns/index.htm
If you are a member of the media who would like more information about this release, please contact Wendy Kilmer, university news coordinator.
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