Mar. 7-14, nine participants and three Mennonite Mission Network staff
visited locations in Jackson, Meridian, and Mashulaville with the Mississippi
service-learning tour. The tour, now in its second year, visits Civil Rights
locations across Mississippi, and connects Mission Network program alumni and friends to
service placements, partners and communities across the state. The photos below are a glimpse into the activities during the week. For more information about future service-learning tours, click here.
and Erika Kreider listen intently as Estella Sandweg, a participant with the
Jackson, Mississippi, Service Adventure unit, explains the unit's "to-do" list.
Fukaya, a participant with the Jackson, Mississippi, Service Adventure unit,
sings a solo at Open Door Mennonite Church while unit leaders Cynthia and Roger
Neufeld Smith play accompaniment.
Little Light of Mine" room and light sculpture in the Mississippi Civil Rights
Museum in Jackson.
Cathy Schmid and Mary Grieser clear vines while
Gerald Freyenberger hoes plant rows at Jackson City Farm. The garden,
one of two managed by Open Door Mennonite Church, produces both food and
learning opportunities for community members.
Charles Johnson spoke to the group at Pine Lake Fellowship Camp in Meridian,
Mississippi, about his experiences as a local Civil Rights activist.
The service-learning tour group enjoyed lots of
delicious food over the course of the week, including chicken and dumplings,
fried catfish, and collard greens. Left to right are Mary and Merlin Grieser,
Carol Sandbakken, Erika and Barry
Kreider, Arloa Bontrager, Susan Nisly, Gerald Freyenberger, and Cathy and Steve
sunlight streams through the stained glass windows at Jubilee Mennonite Church
in Meridian, Mississippi.
and Steve Schmid reminisce with Glen and Emma Myers at Jubilee Mennonite Church
in Meridian, Mississippi. The Myerses spoke to the service-learning tour group
about living in community with Choctaw Native Americans in Mississippi. The
Schmids served with Mennonite Voluntary Service in Mississippi from 1976-1977.
Freyenberger cuts brushwood during a workday at Pine Lake Fellowship Camp in
service-learning tour group reacts as a timed photo at Pine Lake Fellowship Camp in Meridian, Mississippi, doesn't go as planned.
to right: Carol Sandbakken, Travis Duerksen, Susan Nisly, Barry and Erika
Kreider, Mary and Merlin Grieser, Arloa Bontrager, Gerald Freyenberger, and
Cathy and Steve Schmid made up the 2020 Mississippi alumni and friends
service-learning tour group.
Rush, Mary Grieser, Bernice Ramsey, Erika Kreider, and Annie Kelly tie
comforters at Mennonite Service Center in Mashulaville, Mississippi. Other
workday service activities included planting onions, moving wire fence, and
organizing the Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS) tool shed.
Larry Miller, with Mennonite Service Center in Mashulaville,
led daily tours around historical Civil Rights sites with the service-learning
tour group, including the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Macon, Mississippi.
tour participant Gerald Freyenberger stands in front of Mt. Zion United
Methodist Church outside of Philadelphia, Mississippi. After the church was
burned down in 1964, Freyenberger traveled to Mississippi with Mennonite
Disaster Service to help in its reconstruction.
snack break outside Nanih Waiya Indian Mennonite Church near Preston,
Mississippi, was an opportunity for Larry Miller to introduce the group to a
traditional "logger lunch" of souse meat (head cheese), hoop cheese,
and crackers. Most participants opted for just the cheese and crackers.
group enjoyed one last southern meal Friday evening at Pap's Place in Ackerman,
Mississippi, before returning home on Saturday, Mar. 14.