9/4/2012 3:28:00 PM Mission to Malta is eye opening for Oregon children
ICPE mission travelers with Malta Archbishop Paul Cremona.
Bekka Bentz said she isn’t the same person she was June 18.
That was the day she left the United States as part of a mission group that traveled to Malta to serve in a boy’s orphanage with the ICPE Mission Youth Ministry Services. On the three-week mission, local Catholics exposed the residents of the St. Joseph’s Home for Boys to conversational English, while donating more than 850 community service hours.
Based in Sublimity, ICPE USA is an organization committed to evangelization, discipleship and community building.
Bekka will be a freshman this fall.
“This trip has helped me to gain some focus about what I went through this past year and what I’m about to go through,” she said. “Somehow, I feel more confident.”
“Right from the outset our youth engaged in this experience with their whole hearts, whether it was sweeping or mopping a corridor in the new Independent Living Project at the home or teaching the boys to play baseball,” said coordinator Mark Dol.
During the first week, the group helped staff at the orphanage prepare an independent living apartment.
Cultural excursions were interspersed throughout the service trip, so the young people could explore Malta’s 5,000-year history. Each day began with personal prayer time. The group also visited the catacombs of St. Agatha and the grotto of St. Paul.
“The thing I learned the most from this mission trip was to be thankful not only for the big things in life but also for the little things that very often we tend to miss,” said Morgan Alley, junior. “Seeing how the boys would get so happy and excited over just the simple things really touched me.”