Religions and Spirituality

Cranford & Kenilworth Youth Group Give Back during Appalachian Mission Trip

1293e725616523d7add8_Screen_Shot_2018-04-12_at_9.32.36_AM.jpg
Students from Saints Michael & Theresa Youth Ministry embarked on the annual Appalachian Mission Trip to volunteer in West Virginia. Credits: Rich Donovan
1293e725616523d7add8_Screen_Shot_2018-04-12_at_9.32.36_AM.jpg

OSAGE COUNTY, WEST VIRGINIA - For six days over spring break, teens and chaperones from Cranford and Kenilworth went on the annual Appalachian Mission Trip, affectionately known as “Appy,” to volunteer at the local community center, The Shack.

The group was comprised of 52 teens and nine chaperones from Saints Michael & Theresa Youth Ministry (STMTYM), as well as 14 teens and two chaperones from the Archdioceses of Knoxville in Tennessee. The students raised more than $20,000 over the past few months to fund the seven projects that were worked on.

"For the past 16 years, teens from our youth ministry program have traveled to the Osage, WV area, awakening the need and response of our young people toward service to others,” Rich Donovan, STMTYM director, said.

Sign Up for E-News

During the course of the week, the students were split into six groups and rotated between different sites around the community where they landscaped yards, built decks and wheelchair ramps from scratch, repaired doors and electrical work, ripped up and replaced molded flooring and dug 50-foot-long trenches for pipework.

“I love 'Appy' because of the countless friendships I’ve made out it it, and because of how I’ve grown to be a more well-rounded and accepting person,” junior Tim Eimer, who went on the trip for the first time, said.

Each site faced unique problems, and each was given a budget of a few thousand dollars to address these issues. The funds were raised through a pancake breakfast, pasta nights, church collections and palm cross sales that were all run and staffed by the teens.

“The sites, the work, the people- it all really put my life into perspective and made me appreciate what I have in my life,” junior Lily Collyer said. “But, even when my group spent countless hours digging and planting, it was still one of the best experiences of my life.”

Despite the often freezing temperatures and snowy conditions, the teens worked from 8:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. every day with only a 15-minute break for a simple sandwich lunch.

"The Appalachian Mission Trip is one of my favorite things our youth ministry program does because of not only the difference the teens make in a short week, but the bonds the teens develop and support of the parish community that develops from it,” Donovan said.

For many teens, the trip is an annual tradition.

“This year was my fourth and, sadly, my final year going on 'Appy,'” senior Maggie Sheridan said. “Every year has been a unique experience that taught me new things each year, and I am going to miss this trip and all the people on it next year.”

STMTYM will return to the same region next year during Cranford High School’s spring break week to tackle new projects and challenges.

Kat Ruane is a high school student participating in a journalism program with TAPinto Cranford.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Cranford

Cranford H.S. Athletes of the Week: Anna Horne & Phil Marotta

April 17, 2018

CRANFORD, NJ - Due to impressive performances as goalies for varsity lacrosse, Anna Horne and Phil Marotta are Cranford High School's Athletes of the Week.

Horne, a junior, has 408 career saves. Her current total for the season is 84 saves as she helped lead the Cougars to victory in games against Montville and Governor Livingston.

"I like the team dynamic of lacrosse," ...

Northside Kitchen Wins ‘Best Bite’ at Westfield’s Sandwichfest

April 22, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — Northside Kitchen’s fried chicken sandwich beat sandwiches from nine other local restaurants to win “Best Bite” by popular vote at Sandwichfest Sunday. Northside Kitchen is located at 760 Prospect St. in Westfield.

More than 400 ticket holders each had a chance to taste 10 sandwiches and vote for their favorite, according to Rory Chadwick, one of ...

Cranford Knights Wecome Chief Ryan Greco

April 23, 2018

On Tuesday, April 17, the Cranford Knights of Columbus welcomed Cranford Police Chief Ryan Greco for a Meet and Greet before the start of the General Meeting. Chief Greco shared his vision for the Department and held a Q&A session for all Knights present at the Meeting. As a token of their appreciation, the Council gave Chief Greco an American Flag that was flown over the Capitol in ...

Cranford Police Blotter: DWI Arrest & More

April 17, 2018

The information provided does not represent the total scope of police activity. Individuals charged as a result of police investigations are merely an accusation. All defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

1. 04/10/2018 10:11 a.m.

North Avenue East and the Garden State Parkway 137 Exchange

Arrested: Manuel Ramos, 20, Newark

Arrested by: Ptl. Thomas ...

Upcoming Events

Tue, April 24, 7:00 PM

Cranford Community Center, Cranford

The History of Hanson Park and Surrounding ...

Education

Wed, April 25, 7:00 PM

The Cranford Hotel (sponsored by Calvary Lutheran Church), Cranford

Beer & Bible

Religions And Spirituality

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse

By LIZ KEILL

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Politics IS Government in Union County

April 22, 2018

After Bruce Patrson of Garwood was stopped from speaking at the Union County freeholder meeting of March 22 regarding the politics behind refusing to give the party line to a sitting freeholder I thought this brazen suppression of free speech could not go unanswered. A the the April 19 meeting I answered with these comments.

After ten years of following government in Union County I conclude ...