Memorial Park Mission Trip to Mexico

By: Paula Green

An enthusiastic group of parishioners from Memorial Park Church in McCandless Township returned recently from a mission to Camp Kikomar, near Tuxpan, Mexico on the Gulf coast.  Outreach projects are an important part of the church’s vocation, according to Don Creasy, Memorial Park’s minister of Mission and Outreach.

“Our church has been partners with Mexican missionaries Mirna Sotomayor and Diana Garrett for over 20 years.  Our missionary partnerships are rooted in friendships that are established over time. These two Mexican women are the directors of Camp Kikomar. We were invited by their Mexican partners to visit several of their churches in very rural mountain communities. Our group was actually the first “Gringos” invited into some of these areas, which happened because of our many years of friendship with Mirna and Diana.”

This is the third time Memorial Park has embarked on a trip to Camp Kikomar.  There were 15 people in attendance, 13 from Memorial Park, one Rwandan Mission partner (Yohani Kayinamura) as well as a friend from another local church.  It was a rewarding and fulfilling week for the mission group.

“In many places we went, we listened to the plight of very poor communities and the churches in those communities. One of the things that we assisted the residents with was an eyeglass clinic. We examined and gave out glasses to about 150 people. Veterinarian eye surgeon, Dr. Larry Bagley was in charge of this ministry,” said Creasy.

“Another ministry was run by Head-to-Toe salon owner, Amy Beaudry. Amy gave free haircuts to over 100 people, mostly women. These women are very poor. A haircut from a professional like Amy is a real treat.  Memorial Park Women’s Ministry director, Michele Holmes was in charge of Vacation Bible School (VBS) and women’s ministry. The women were grateful for a time to make crafts together and to have the opportunity to tell their stories.

The kids had a blast as they participated in hearing Bible stories, games and crafts. At the end of the week we invited many of the village kids to VBS Camp at Camp Kikomar, which is on a beautiful beach. These kids had never seen the ocean.   For anyone who is considering this type of outreach work, Kikomar is a great first time international mission trip.  It is a safe environment with lots of translators, and the missionaries speak English,” added Creasy.

For more information on this program, contact Christ for the City International at https://cfci.org/trip/camp-ministry-in-tuxpan-mexico/.