San Marco teens donate mission money to hurricane relief

San Marco teens donate mission money to hurricane relief
Sarah and Rachel Sasser hold a mock-up check of their donation for Bahama Disaster Relief to Samaritan’s Purse, a nonprofit in Boone, N.C.

The devastation suffered by residents in the Bahama Islands had such a profound effect on two San Marco teenagers that they emptied their proverbial piggy banks at Southside United Methodist Church to assist islanders that have been left homeless.

For the past two years, Sarah Sasser, 15, and her 13-year-old sister, Rachel, have worked a total of 130 service hours selling pumpkins in SUMCs annual pumpkin patch and accruing “mission” dollars through other work at their church. Although no actual money is exchanged, SUMC compensates its youth for church work in mission money that can be used to help kids attend church camp or go on youth mission trips such as the annual week-long trip to Guatemala it sponsors each year.  Over the past two years, the Sasser sisters had not tapped into their mission money account and were incredibly surprised to learn their combined total in mission money was $2,000.

“I didn’t realize that working the pumpkin patch could have such an impact on missions until I was told that we had $2,000 in our student account,” said Sarah. “Our family discussed different missions; however, we couldn’t decide where to send the money. After watching Hurricane Dorian as it damaged the Bahama Islands, we knew that was where we should send it.”

Rachel agreed. “After seeing the devastation after Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, I realized that we were so blessed with all that we have, and that we should help the people of the Bahamas who don’t have as much,” she said.

Even their younger sister, Anna, was affected by the devastation in the Bahamas and wanted her sisters to help. “My youngest child is 10 years old, so she does not work in the pumpkin patch,” said Christine Sasser, the girls’ mother. “Previously, she has said she liked hurricanes because she got to go to Mimi’s, (her grandmother’s house), but when she saw what happened to the Bahamas on TV, she knew it was bad.”

Sarah and Rachel, who are homeschooled and attend Providence Extension Program in Mandarin two days a week, selected the Bahamas Disaster Relief Fund sponsored by Franklin Graham’s Samaritan’s Purse nonprofit in Boone, N.C. “We had visited Boone, North Carolina, which is the headquarters of Samaritan’s Purse. Because they visited the headquarters, I think they felt that’s where they wanted to send the money,” Christine said, adding that even as the hurricane raged on, Samaritan’s Purse was filling up DC-8 airplanes with supplies to send immediately and planned to set up a temporary hospital to assist hurricane victims.

By Marcia Hodgson
Resident Community News

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