They will know we are Lutherans by our backpacks

Backpack Backs

We have safely arrived in New Orleans after finishing a very powerful closing ceremony in Orlando yesterday! The youth were very pumped as we left Orlando and motivated to go into the world share the love of Christ. The mood turned a little somber last evening when we heard of the tragedy in Minneapolis. We joined as groups and prayed for the victims and survivors and their families. We spent last evening in Pensecola, FL at the Howard Johnson before driving into New Orleans this morning and getting started at Camp Restore. Some of us on the busses held our breath as we crossed many very long bridges! Our afternoon at Camp Restore was HARD work, but everyone can already see results. We have been charged with clearing a local park (2+ acres in size) with playground equipment that had grass up to our waists. The first set of youth used weed wackers to knock down the grass, the next set used mowers to cut the grass, the next set raked the grass that was there and put it in piles for some to bag up, and the final group will come in and mow the grass at the lowest setting on the mower. The project will probably take most of the day tomorrow, but the benefits to the children in the neighborhood will be priceless. There were already kids in the neighborhood driving by and smiling with excitement to see that someone was taking the time to help out their neighborhood. Another one of our priorities is staying hydrated – at least a bottle of water every half an hour. We are back at the church now, have had supper and are looking forward to a refreshing good night’s sleep so that we will be prepared to finish our project tomorrow. We will leave New Orleans tomorrow after our work and showers, and look forward to seeing everyone on Saturday. Pray for our group as we finish in New Orleans tomorrow and as we travel Friday night and Saturday. Our guess is we will not blog again before our return, but will try to post pictures for tomorrow if we get a chance!

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