FCC Mission Trip

Each year our church sponsors a group of youth and adult leaders who spend time out of state working to improve the lives of others through a community project. This tradition has continued over the decades including projects in the US and South America. Read a summary of past years trips below.

Highlights from the 2018 Trip

On Saturday June 16th, the youth mission team gathered at FCC and headed out to Hosanna Industries in Rochester, PA. Packing was made a bit lighter with no need to have an additional supply van (all tools provided by Hosanna!!!) and accommodations in their dorm meant no air mattresses or cots required. The team met up with the other vans from Ozaukee and North Shore Congregational churches to caravan to Pennsylvania.

On Sunday the team attended First Congregational Church of Etna in Pittsburgh and went to a Pirates baseball game. The minister of that church, Rev. Dr. Donn Ed, is also the Executive Director of Hosanna Industries. He was on site several days to work along- side us on our projects. Each morning during the week, chapel was held first thing and then work crews were divvied up and sent out – much like the commissioning of the disciples, the crews didn’t know what they were going to encounter and trusted on the provisions they would be provided and God’s strength to see them through the day (though they did pack a lunch!).

On Monday it was hot! But the team endured the heat and split into the “Bricks” and “Ladder” teams. The path that the Bricks Team completed was done at the Gibsonia Campus, a cultural arts center, that is an extension of Hosanna Industries. The Bricks team paved a path and laid bricks while the ladder team prepped a house for siding by installing starter and trim vinyl.

Tuesday the team tackled working on an entire home together – one crew cleared out the interior of the home (filling up an entire dumpster) while the other crew worked outside, clearing all of the trees, shrubs, bushes and brush to reveal a white two story home hiding beneath!

Though it rained on Wednesday, the team dodged most of it and completely sided a house for a gentleman suffering from a disability that requires nursing care.

Wrapping up the week strong, the crews combined to install a brand new roof on the home of an elderly woman who was in need of assistance. She has been in her home 52 years, but is physically unable to maintain her home and it was in dire need of repair. At the time of this writing the team is planning to pack up and start the trip home on Friday morning.

Reports back to the home base of FCC have been encouraging, inspiring and heartwarming. All of the mission team and everyone who has been involved send out a resounding thank you – your blessings to us have resulted in untold blessings to the Pittsburgh community and the transforming power of God has worked through the hands and hearts of our youth.


Thanks to all who participated in the 2018 mission team’s Auction Dinner! It was a great success, raising more than $10,000 to offset expenses associated with the trip.

Check out highlights from out 2017 trip.

Our 2017 ASP Mission Team is back safe and sound after an incredible week of making three homes in Kentucky warmer, safer, and drier. The week ran smoothly overall, and updates were made on the FCC Facebook page nearly every day.

We departed at 8:00 on Saturday morning and the team arrived in Winchester, Kentucky, by late afternoon. We were able to check into our hotel and then head out for dinner. After a good night’s sleep and breakfast at the hotel, we were on the road to Daniel Boone National Forest for lunch and a hike up to the natural bridge and through the beautiful forest trails. The hike was a great way for fellowship, adventure, and it provided some nice photo opportunities. Upon arrival at our center in Jackson, Kentucky on Sunday afternoon, we unloaded the vans, set up our sleeping quarters, and organized our supplies for the busy week ahead. There were two other churches at our center, one from Michigan and another from Ohio, for a total of 69 volunteers. We also had four amazing ASP staff members at our center who guided our projects and facilitated group activities and meals. Sunday evening was busy with dinner, as well as group gathering that included introductions, singing, and the expectations for the week. Later that night, we conducted home visits so our adult and youth leaders could meet the families and see the projects firsthand.

The schedule on Monday through Friday was consistent, with 7:00 wake up, 7:15 devotion and breakfast, followed by preparing lunches, loading supplies into the vans, and then heading out to the work sites. Some homes were only 10 minutes away, while others required a drive of up to 30 minutes. The teams would work until 4:00-4:30, load up, and head back to the center for showers, dinner, and daily group gathering. Tuesday included culture night, where we were blessed to hear a Bluegrass band. Thursday was the picnic with the families at the park in town. Needless to say, our week was a busy and exciting one, but we still found time to head out for an ice cream treat each night and share stories of the day’s progress.

The adults and teens were on the trip to positively impact the homes they were assigned, so below is a brief synopsis of the projects that each group was part of:

Team 1 – Chip Smith and Holly Elwing led the charge with Michael Elwing, Adrian Coppage, Dylan Hayden, Ethan Wendt, and Nick Clark. *This crew cut openings in the floors of the home, dug holes and installed posts to provide support to the girders that they built to firm up the floor and foundation. They then tore out the bedroom floor and installed new subfloor on Friday. They also made the grandchildren happy by fixing their basketball hoop early in the week.

Team 2 – Nick Sgarlata and Jim Santelle mentored the second group of boys, including Ben Hudson, Kale Lund, Jason Hayden, and Jordan Weishoff.  *The team demolished the kitchen floor and performed joist repairs to get the project off and running. They created a band-joist to provide support to the front of the home, and then installed the subfloor and luan in the kitchen. Next came carpet removal, demolition of the family room floor, digging holes and leveling the floor, and then lastly laminate was installed.

Team 3 – Tonia Wallner and Jon Stern were blessed to work with Hailey Sgarlata, Sarah Jensen, Bella Hendrickson, and Maddie Sgarlata. *This crew installed tiles in the kitchen and fixed a rotten corner of the home, which included both the bedroom floor and the joists. The underpinning needed to be removed to make these improvements, which meant that the team had a puzzle to put back together on Wednesday afternoon. This completed the work that needed to be done on this home, so they joined Team 2 to help with their big project. With the extra help, the team was able to tile the kitchen floor and lend a hand on the family room flooring project to end the week, which proved to be quite rewarding.

Floaters – Mark Lund and Kerri Weishoff made supply runs and deliveries to each of the work sites throughout the week, and did whatever was needed to keep the projects alive. Their willingness to lend a hand wherever needed meant so much to each team and was critical to our success.

There was time for bonding with the homeowners and their families throughout the week, which is always a special part of the experience. They were appreciative of the work that was done, which also made the trip worthwhile.

The 2017 team thanks you for your generous financial support of this trip, as well as for your love and prayers. It means so much!! We will share our trip experience on October 15 with a special ASP Mission Sunday where we will show a DVD and photos from the week and offer a presentation to the church. ~ Blessings, Tonia