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Brendan Flanagan and Reilly naming names
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"Much more than just building physical 'houses,' my experiences with the Appalachia Help Weeks focused on building relationships with the people in the communities that we work with and on building 'homes' filled with compassion. I really enjoy how we pair the service during the day with reflections at night because these reflections help us to articulate how we find God at work even in the most desolate areas of the country where it can be harder to see God. I find that more than any other week of the year, I see God all around me in the people whom we meet and work with, in the stories that are shared, and even in the beautiful mountainous landscape that surrounds us."

Katie Flanagan

Boston College

Class of 2021

"In the summer of 2016 and 2017, I volunteered for the Appalachia Help Week.  The weeks I spent in West Virginia were filled with sweat, prayer, and love.  We woke up early and worked long days, but at the end of the trip I felt rejuvenated.  This service event is best described as a vacation for the soul.  By the end of both weeks, my group and I had bettered the lives of struggling families in Preston County.  You should consider the Appalachia Help Week if you are looking to enhance your faith/make a difference."

Michael Moran

The University of Scranton

Class of 2021

“The Appalachia Service trip is special to me because of its overwhelming sense of community, one which is specifically grounded in faith. This community spreads from your fellow volunteers to the townspeople of Rowlesburg who you are helping, and within just a few days, these relationships prove to be so special and unforgettable. Through living in this community and engaging in both the service and discussion/prayer aspects of this program, I found my faith was able to grow and I was truly able to improve as a person.”

Brendan Armstrong

Boston College

Class of 2024

"I first decided to go to West Virginia because of the positive experiences my older sister and dad had on their trips, and at first I looked at it as an opportunity to check some boxes after confirmation and something that would look good on my college application. While this sounds typical of a high school service trip, I ended up learning so much about myself, my fellow volunteers and the people in West Virginia than I could have ever imagined. This experience tested my faith in God by allowing me to distance myself from my comfort zone and take a break from using my phone. I was able to appreciate new relationships that I formed which have grown stronger over the years and appreciate God in nature and the people we met. Each of my four years in Rowlesburg was different but I felt like each experience brought me right where I needed to be in that moment and for that I am extremely grateful!"

Rosie Rittenhouse

University of Richmond

Class of 2022

“My time in Appalachia taught me that true service is not only about material help but building relationships with our brothers and sisters in Christ.  Looking back now, I realize that Preston County West Virginia is where I first learned to love and serve as Jesus taught.”

Stephen Jagoe

University of Pennsylvania

Class of 2022

"Going to Appalachia showed me that my faith isn’t just about going to church and praying: it’s about spreading God’s love and lifting up people who are less fortunate. It also showed me that even in the most impoverished and downtrodden areas, God’s light still shines, and there is still strong faith."

 

Jack Flanagan

Fordham University

Class of 2023

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"Christ has no body now on earth but yours.”

― Teresa of Avila

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