Doing What’s Best for Kids

Fort McMurray Christian School's Mission Trip to Modesto and San Francisco

Posted on: General News

(Fort McMurray, AB - May 24th, 2024) Fort McMurray Christian School recently embarked on a groundbreaking mission trip, taking their grade 8 and 9 students to Modesto and San Francisco, California, during Spring Break. This trip marked the school’s first international mission endeavour, and it proved to be a life-changing experience for students and staff.

Although this was the Christian School’s inaugural international mission trip, the school has long prioritized service to others as a core value. Principal Geoff Bishop expressed his excitement about the new venture, stating, “It has been my desire to bring these types of trips to FMCS since I became principal. Short-term trips such as these have a lasting impact on those who take part more so than those they go to help.”

The mission trip was organized in collaboration with Youth With A Mission (YWAM), a global organization dedicated to engaging youth in mission work. YWAM Fort McMurray was pivotal in preparing the FMCS team, meeting with them every Wednesday in the months leading up to the trip. These meetings included logistical planning, leadership training, faith-sharing sessions, and discussions on what it means to be mission-minded.

During their ten-day mission, students were immersed in a variety of service projects aimed at helping marginalized communities, including Afghan refugees and the unhoused. Activities ranged from distributing food at community centres to engaging in construction projects, hosting church services, and building community through BBQs, hot chocolate distributions, and games.

One remarkable aspect of the trip was the students’ leadership. Each student was entrusted with leading the group at different points throughout the journey. Their tasks included setting up events, cooking meals, cleaning up afterwards, and ensuring the smooth running of daily activities, highlighting their invaluable contributions.

“The ultimate goal of this trip and ones like it is that the students gain principles and skills they can take back home here in YMM,” explained Principal Bishop. “We have many needs here in our community that we hope the students will address now that they have the experience to draw from.”

The mission trip profoundly impacted students, fostering personal growth and a deeper sense of empathy and responsibility. Principal Bishop, reflecting on the trip’s significance, noted, “Witnessing our students rise to the challenge in situations that require them to problem-solve and learn from their experiences is one of the greatest privileges of being in the field of education.”

Beyond the service projects, the students had ample opportunities to explore the rich cultural landscapes of Modesto and San Francisco. They visited iconic sites such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Ghirardelli Square, and Fisherman’s Wharf. They even explored the forest where the Ewok scenes from “Return of the Jedi” were filmed and experienced the thrill of riding a street trolley through the hilly streets of San Francisco.

Principal Bishop is not only optimistic but also committed to the future of such mission trips, stating, “We went with an open heart to serve in any way that was needed, and we are determined to continue making these trips in the future.”

The recent mission trip to Modesto and San Francisco has set a new precedent for the Fort McMurray Christian School, highlighting the school’s commitment to service and the transformative power of hands-on mission work. For the students of grades 8 and 9, it was not just a trip but an eye-opening experience that will shape their perspectives and actions for years to come.

For additional information, contact:

Momin Syed                                                           
Communications Coordinator
Fort McMurray Public School Division