Bedford Presbyterian Church promotes faith in action by providing opportunities for people to help those in need. There is nothing more debilitating to the soul than to read or hear about human suffering. In the face of so much need, it would be very easy to commiserate with others about the world’s woes without really taking any steps to improve the situation. I would not feel comfortable attending a church where concerns were voiced, but then set aside or forgotten. BPC helps others on a local, national, and international level. Since 1996, the church has taken trips with Bridges to Community, mostly to Nicaragua, to build earthquake-resistant homes for families that live in dirt floor houses with leaky roofs and walls.
I have traveled with BPC five times to Nicaragua, but my most recent trip in February 2016 was particularly special. My younger son, Erik, who was a BPC volunteer in Nicaragua all four years in high school, became an International Volunteer Coordinator (IVC) with Bridges after he graduated from college. This past February, I worked in the group that Erik headed up, and was impressed with the way that he coordinated all aspects of our week, from translating for the masons and community members to leading evening discussions to keeping a group of high school students involved in the construction process. The opportunities provided by BPC during Erik’s high school years—Midnight Run, Habitat for Humanity, work trips to Appalachia and Nicaragua—had a profound effect on the way he views the world and the choices that he’s making with his time and energy. I thank the BPC community for being an important part of who Erik is today.