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April 9, 2014
Baylor Urban Missions joined Literacy Connexus . . .


Sixteen Baylor students ignited sparks in Eagle Pass last month. But don't call 911! The students kindled relationships with children and youth over literacy and restorative justice activities as part of a spring break Urban Missions trip.


Derek Byrne helped structure each day's literacy events at the Nick Carr Youth Center. Along with reading to and with the children each day, the Baylor students distributed stacks of new books, donated by Literacy Connexus.  "I saw incredible interactions between members of our team and the children of Eagle Pass," Derek said. "The love they brought to this community is incredible."  


Marissa Butler agreed. "The most meaningful activity of the week was simply building relationships with the children at Nick Carr and seeing their enthusiasm for reading build over the week that we were there."


Two of those children, Ricky and Ramon, became fast friends with Baylor student Hayley Sharma. Listening to their hopes of becoming a doctor and a policeman, Hayley encouraged them to read, work hard in school, and dream big. "The most memorable moment," she said, "was seeing Ricky loading up his book bag. He couldn't even carry the bag because it was packed so heavy with books! He was so, so happy, and I know that he will read all of the books many times."

In addition to leading literacy activities at the Nick Carr Youth Center and the local H-E-B grocery store, the Baylor students spent time with youth at the Restorative Justice Juvenile Detention Center. For Zach Denais, this was the most meaningful part of the trip.  


"I thought it was such an honor to be able to interact with them, even if for only a couple of days, and encourage them, acknowledge their hard work, and just be their friend," Zach said. "A lot of them were aching for someone to care about them, and I think we, as a team, were able to show them that they were loved and valued in our eyes and especially in God's eyes."


The Baylor students witnessed undeniable impact from their week in Eagle Pass. Children who wanted nothing to do with books at the start of the week became excited about reading. Children who lacked self-esteem gained new friends and role models. Children who had no reading materials in their homes ended up with more books than they could carry!


The most surprising impact may have been on the student missionaries themselves, as they grew in awareness of immigration issues, of literacy challenges along the border, and of blessings derived from selfless giving.  


"I had a mentality of serving and giving to the community," Zach Denais said, "and I was totally caught off guard when I received so much love and hospitality in Eagle Pass."

Lester Meriwether, Executive Director 
4802 Highway 377 S., Suite 14
Fort Worth, TX 76116
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Pam Moore, Editor   

Trivia Challenge 
1. Rapa Nui is the current regional name for what was originally called, in Dutch, Paasch-Eyland. We know this location as:


a) Aruba Island


b) Easter Island


c) Pitcairn Island


d) Wake Island 

2. French visitors may wonder at the sign Sale over displays of merchandise in shop windows. In French, sale means: 


a) dirty


b) free


c) sold


d) useless 

3. In English, ducks quack. In Turkish, they vak, and in French, they coin. In Danish, ducks: 


a) aflac


b) rap


c) smak


d) wink


Problem accessing  the answers? Reply to this email and we'll shoot them your way.  

These instructional links may help: 


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