Instead of taking a vacation or visiting their family over fall break, more than 85 Belmont students, faculty and staff spent their time away from campus this semester taking the ‘plunge’ — a tradition that has been hosted by Belmont’s Office of University Ministries for the past six years. This year’s teams traveled to St. Louis, Memphis, Birmingham, Indianapolis and Atlanta as they worked with local organizations that serve the people of each city.
In St. Louis, a team worked alongside New City Fellowship and City Lights serving widows by building a wheelchair ramp, mowing lawns and completing roof repair and basic construction projects. While there, the group also participated in a civil rights tour of the city which included many historical sites.
A team of 15 traveled to Indianapolis where they mulched playgrounds at a church and community center, installed smoke detectors and painted homes, worked in a food pantry and prepared lunches for school children. Trip leader and Associate Professor of Chemistry and Physics Dr. Steve Robinson said the most memorable part of the trip was the opportunity to see students serve the Lord through service. “Seeing God glorified in the selfless service of students who forwent a chance to rest and catch up with school work over fall break was so meaningful,” he said. “You don’t have to have it all together to seek God and serve others.”
Student Emilee Filspart spent the long weekend in Birmingham, Alabama serving one of Belmont ministry partners, Urban Ministry. While there, the team painted the house of a woman who became a dear friend. “She was so appreciative of our generosity,” Filspart said. “She told us that as a young couple, she and her husband did service work and she felt like things had come full circle.”
Each of the teams did similar work in different cities, working in food pantries, with children’s ministries, urban gardens, ministry with those experiencing homelessness, and in local schools. Teams also worshipped on Sunday morning in a variety of urban church settings.
For more information about Plunge and other service opportunities through University Ministries, click here.