Written by Ashley Ramirez
Crusaders woke up early to attend Reaching Out, an event that happens every semester.
As students made their way into Shelton Theater Oct. 2, they were treated to breakfast and a T-shirt.
They chose from about 20 locations to spend the morning serving in whatever way needed. The Ronald McDonald House, Helping Hands and Salvation Army were organizations visited.
Freshman Allison Kelley helped at the Hope for the Hungry office building.
“My group moved sheet metal, and I was the one who tallied up how many sheets were in each stack. They are using the sheet metal to build stuff around there and then sending all of the extra to Haiti,” she said.
It was Kelley’s first Reaching Out to attend, and she enjoyed the experience.
“I’m glad I was able to help. If we didn’t have a bunch of people helping out and moving, it would have taken the staff a while to move it all,” she said.
Kelley already plans to wake up early in the spring for the next Reaching Out.
“You are never more like Jesus then when you are serving, even if that does mean waking up at 8 a.m. on a Saturday,” she said.
Junior philosophy major Tyler Potts is the SGA director of spiritual life. He and the four class chaplains planned this day of service projects. Contacting the locations was one of their duties.
“We like to work with organizations we’ve had connections with in the past,” Potts said.
The team gives students a variety of choices so they may find projects around the community they are gracious enough to do.
“If you come with a prepared heart … then you can change lives and allow your heart to be influenced by the Lord,” he said.
Every semester university organizations and groups go to locations to both serve as blessings and grow as teams.
This year, the Miss Mary Hardin-Baylor participants and directors cleaned the Ronald McDonald House, and the Drama Ministry went to Belton Christian Youth Center to assist with yard work.
Junior English major Lindsay Prater joined the group at BCYC.
“I sat in the sandy playground and pulled weeds and occasionally took breaks to climb on the jungle gym,” she said.
The students helping at the after school program had fun serving together. Although Prater is not part of the ministry, she felt comfortable with the group.
“The thing I loved the most was the fellowship the Drama Ministry had. They were really encouraging to each other,” she said.
There was a BCYC employee at the facility with a list of areas that needed work. Cleaning school buses and picking up trash from the playground were a few of the duties the group was given.
Potts and his team have already begun preparing for next semester’s event so students may have these types of experiences again.
He said, “Reaching Out is what you make it.”
“Everyone should participate in Reaching Out at least once while here,” Prater said. “I know it’s early, but it’s totally worth it.”