1) Sleeping in a tent for a week with 8 girls can be done, 2) giraffes are picky eaters, and 3) doing work for our fellow North Dakotans is very rewarding. Our St. John Lutheran Sr. High Youth Group arrived in Minot with 16 teens and 5 adults, ready to work. We set up our 5 tents at one of our advisor’s cabin at Strawberry Lake. During the week we sent teams to Christ Lutheran Church and the Minot Zoo.
At Christ Lutheran we assisted the volunteers that were working there already. Some of our jobs were; sweeping, painting, preparing lumber, insulating, hammering nails, and some kids helped build the roof.
At the zoo, we had many different projects. One day we tore down a shed, another we re-landscaped the tiger and lion exhibits, which consisted of emptying 2 dump trucks full of sand. My personal favorite project at the zoo was packaging the giraffe’s food. We drove around the zoo to find the cottonwood and willow trees and cut off their branches. Then we cleaned the branches of their leaves, and put the leaves in giant Ziploc bags that were frozen so the giraffes would have “fresh food” for the winter.
After a hard day’s work, we went back to the cabin to relax by the lake. Well, a lot of playing on and by the lake. We had so much fun jet skiing, tubing, fishing, canoeing, and swimming along with many corn hole and other yard game tournaments. The end of the night was my favorite time, we would sit around the fire, singing songs accompanied by the guitar. There’s nothing like watching the sun set over the lake while singing Sanctuary. We had our devotions lake side usually, and one night on the pontoons. This was a great time to talk about our work, and where we saw God that day. Overall, it was such a wonderful trip where our group made many memories, and bonded together in God’s love. We were blessed to do God’s work with our hands. (Submitted by: Rachel Lantz, Senior-Dickinson High School)