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Arete in Arizona

6/14/2011
By:
bethel
Arete
 
What did Arete do this summer?
 
We took a trip to Arizona, May 10-17.
 
 What did you do in Arizona?
Partnered with the Desert Gardens Cumberland Presbyterian Church...We traveled first to the Navajo Nation's Reservation outside of Flagstaff, Arizona.  We worked alongside the ministerial leadership team, which included Pastor Jerry Hagelin, Kelvis Josh - Navajo CEF Team Leader, as well as Jordan and Megan Cody - CEF Leadership Team, to clean (inside and out) the geodesic structure where teen training, summer kids camps and retreats are held for the Navajo Indian Nation. Outside activities included roofing a shed which housed the batteries for their solar energy (which had been destroyed because of the hole in the roof) and ripping up scrub brush and bushes near the building so that the teens and kids would be safer from rattlesnakes which like to hide in them.  Broken glass that might hurt kids was cleaned up along with any debris.  Inside the structure was prepared for summer use by cleaning the walls, floors, kitchen, bathroom, and living areas.  
When we finished working, we traveled to a Navajo flea market in Tuba City, where students interacted with Navajo vendors, purchased a few items such as jewelry, and tasted a variety of Navajo foods. Students and faculty tried blue corn mush made with ashes from the Pinion Tree, mutton, Navajo cakes, Navajo burgers, and two students even ate a Navajo delicacy called achii, also known as, deep friend sheep intestines!

The Grand Canyon was only an hour away, so we detoured en route back to Desert Gardens CP Church where we were staying to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.  Many had never been to the Canyon, and we all found it to be a wonderful experience.
 
The following day, we assisted the members of the Desert Gardens CP Church back in Tuscon on a roadside cleanup project they are committed to year round .  Our group collected over twenty bags of trash in just a few hours … setting a new church record!

At Pastor Jerry’s invitation, our group gave an "All About Bethel" presentation at the church during the Sunday morning church service.  Ms. Freeman and Ms. Corbin spoke to the congregation about the mission of BU and the many ways that Bethel is becoming more service oriented.  Ellen Hudson, Chris Williams, Kaneeshia Wade, and Rachel Rosser discussed the many ways that Bethel has afforded them opportunities for emotional, intellectual, physical, and spiritual growth and development.  Mary Creasy, Dennis Hughes, Ellen Hudson, Kaneeshia Wade, Christa Tatum, and Rebekah Mahoney performed “How Great is Our God” for the congregation.
How was the trip, fun, emotional...hard work?   
 
 It was fun and educational to learn more about the Navajo and Southwest cultures and to spend time together working toward a common goal.  While certainly the work that we engaged in was somewhat physically draining/demanding it was very rewarding to be working with this wonderful group of people on such a worthwhile cause.
 
ARETE MEMBERS - KANEESHIA WADE, ELLEN HUDSON, CHRISTA TATUM, NIC TATUM, BRITTANY PRESSON, CHRIS WILLIAMS, RACHEL ROSSER HUGHES, DENNIS HUGHES, MARY CREASY, REBEKAH MAHONEY TWO ADVISORS:  STACIE FREEMAN & KRISTI CORBIN