A huge thanks to Trinity Oaks for our breakfast – the muffins are a hit!
Today was all about Community – and we loved it. We spent the day in Cobo Center at what is called the interaction center. It is fully of activities from service projects, to painting murals, to decorating our bibles and more.
The guys in our group especially loved the soccer, hockey, basketball, and foursquare.
Some of us caught up with one of our favorite singers – Rachel Kurtz. She sang for us and jumped off a large platform in the inflatable area. We laughed so hard because when she jumped she plugged her nose like she was jumping into a pool. Hysterical.
They highlight today was definitely our “Water Walk”. We learned about the need for clean water and access to it. A women in sub-Saharan African walks on average 3.7 miles a day for water. We got a small taste of it in our afternoon. Everyone in our group grabbed a 40 pound jug of water and began walking. We had different stories to follow as we walked. Walker & Miles were following the journey of 6 year old boy who got the water for his family. We only walked 1/37th of what they walk each day but it stuck with us. Robert said, “Carrying water this far sucked. It was an eye-opener. We are so privileged.” We also explored the challenges along the way – like floods, and heat, and disease. Most of our group got “malaria” and spend time at the clinic laying on cots taking our “medicine.” Alex’s story revealed that he had diarrhea and he had to sit on a toilet for two minutes before he could continue carrying the water.
We agree—everyone deserves access to clean water. We need to get involved and make a difference. Just today youth gathering participants raise $144,000 for clean water projects through ELCA World Hunger.
We ended the day posing as the Last Supper. Robert was Jesus – no need for the prop beard. It’s all natural with Robert.
We then headed to Greek Town for dinner – and it was family style and delicious. The lamp was amazing. And we had flaming cheese. Flaming cheese! One of the funniest parts of dinner was when Danielle asked the group, “If you could take a bath in anything other than water, what would it be?” Miles immediately chimed in “Vaseline.” What?!
After dinner, we headed to the dome. And thanks to the work of Michael, Miles and Alex, we ended up with floor seats. We were in the action. The loved the giant conga lines and saying “I love you” to everyone they saw.
Tonight’s dome was all about bearing burdens. We heard from speakers who challenged us to think outside the box that the world tries to put us in. One speaker shared about immigration and the challenge to be people of welcome. Everyone on stage reminded us that we are not called to bear burdens alone – they are lighter when shared together. We especially liked the spoken word poet who shared about Detroit’s messy but rich history. As she said, “Detroit is broken, but it works.”
Here’s one line – from their mouths – about their days:
- Miles – Went out of my comfort zone and dominated Greek Food.
- Walker – You can go faster alone, if you wanna go further, go together.
- Robert – Carrying water is not the greatest thing in the world.
- Juliana – Not all burdens have to bring you down.
- Shelby – Detroit is broken but it works.
- Caroline Plyler – No water jug for me. I just took pictures. Rise up together.
- Alex – Flaming cheese is delicious.
- Michael – Poverty is not about scarcity, its an issue of inequality.
- Danielle – God made us bigger than the box.