Commission Unto Mexico reaches goal, sets new records

Southern Nazarene University’s 15th annual Commission Unto Mexico trip marked a record-setting year with 310 participants working on 12 construction projects in Monterrey, Mexico’s third largest city. VBS programs also took place at each of the 12 sites, and a mobile medical team of 3 doctors and several nurses hosted a free medical clinic at four of the sites where they treated over 360 patients during the week.

“This was our best year in terms of achieving our primary goal of building relationships,” said Dr. Howard Culbertson, SNU Professor of Missions.

“There are not enough words to describe the feeling I have for my Mexican brothers and sisters,” said one participant of her experience. “They are gracious, giving, and loving. I went to give, and I came away blessed beyond measure.”

Some of the largest groups represented included the South Arkansas District with 70 participants, the Louisiana District with 34, and a church group from South Portland, Maine, with 26. SNU President Dr. Loren Gresham, VP for Church Relations Terry Toler, and VP for Spiritual Development Dee Kelley were also in attendance.

The trip began in the parking lot of McAllen (TX) First Church of the Nazarene on December 27, 2003, where the group was met with a surprise visit from two of the local television stations. After a morning of orientation, the group loaded buses and headed toward the Mexican border.

Once in Monterrey, the group split into 12 teams who then went to work on construction projects at 11 Nazarene churches and the Northeast Mexican campground, painting, remodeling, digging, building concrete block walls, cleaning, plastering, sanding, leveling, and reinforcing.

Perhaps one of the most cherished trip highlights was ringing in the New Year with Mexican friends and a Christian mariachi band during a celebration dinner on the last night.

Plans for the 2004-2005 Commission Unto Mexico trip are already underway, scheduled for a return visit to Monterrey, December 27, 2004 - January 3, 2005. For further information, contact Dr. Howard Culbertson, co-director of Commission Unto Mexico, at 405.491.6693, or visit www.snu.edu/mexico.