2020 Agape Mission Trip

Puerto Rico
May 30 - June 7, 2020
World Renew
Campamento El Guacio

Agape will travel to Puerto Rico this summer to assist with disaster relief from 2017 Hurricane Maria.  We will volunteer with World Renew Disaster Reponse Services and stay at Campamento El Guacio, a Presbyterian camp and conference center in the western mountains of Puerto Rico.

In an effort to provide lasting assistance to Campamento El Guacio by purchasing new furniture, Agape is hosting three fundraisers:

  • Dinner Theater Sunday, November 24, 2019
  • Pancake Breakfast Sunday, January 26, 2020
  • Trivia Night Friday, April 3, 2020

The cost of the Mission Trip is $625 per person.  As always, do not let the cost keep you from joining.  Scholarships and payment plans are available. Contact Summer for details.

Commitment is due no later than Sunday, December 1st by submitting your Mission Trip Covenant and a deposit of $325 to Cherstin.
(If making an online payment select "Registration Fee" from the drop down and write "Agape Mission Trip" in the memo line)

The Story of World Renew

At World Renew, we join with the world's families to change the story of hunger, poverty, and illness. For nearly 60 years, hundreds of thousands of people have shared in this calling: staff, local partners, global communities, and people like you. Every day, people like you give in response to a disaster, offer monthly support to Free a Family from poverty, or travel with our volunteer teams to help renew hope firsthand. Together, we change stories, and those stories change the world.

The Mission of World Renew

Compelled by God's deep passion for justice and mercy, we join communities around the world to renew hope, reconcile lives, and restore creation.

The Story of Camp El Guacio

Guacio Project, a dream between 1943 and 1945, became a reality in January 1946. The project started with Rev. Edward O'Dell, Presbyterian Mission Coordinator for Cuba and Puerto Rico, and the Rev. Angel Archilla Cabrera, Superintendent of the Presbyterian Church, in Puerto Rico. They both invited Stanley and Jeanne Harbinson to visit a farm belonging to the Presbyterian Church, in San Sebastian, PR, with the purpose of obtaining proposals for the use of this farm. Harbison, a conscientious objector during the Second World War, worked with his wife in a community project, in Castañer, Lares. During that time there were various projects in Puerto Rico for young objectors to serve in communities. There were two objectives which motivated initiating the project: serving the neighboring community and providing youth with their first job experience.

Camp El Guacio opened as part of the mission of the Synod Boriquen, Presbyterian Church U.S.A. As part of their community service project, they motivated planting in the parcels of land where community people lived. They gave educational services to improve their homes and quality of life. For this, they developed literacy and a health program; held religious, recreational and other community services. Eventually, a church and a health clinic were organized for the community.

For many years, the Camp was used exclusively as a retreat and conference center. On September 2017, after Hurricane Maria hit the island, the future of the Camp changed, in ways never expected.

Camp El Guacio After Hurricane Maria

On September 2017, Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico. The hurricane caused huge damages in the communities and infrastructures. The situation invited the Executive Director of the camp to retake the initial mission of the camp and assist the community near El Guacio.

The Executive Director had the initiative of starting distributing clean water, around the community. After helping the community and seeing their needs, the Director noticed ice was a much-needed necessity. An ice machine was requested and donated, providing 500 pounds of ice daily, which was distributed to the nearby community, without electricity.

As there was no running water or electricity in the community, three washing machines were available for the community. Housing and meals were provided for volunteer groups (relief workers) who were working in the nearby towns of San Sebastian, Las Marias, and Maricao. A psychologist, voluntarily, provided counseling services as well, to the community. The Camp became a distribution center of food, basic needs, solar lamps, water filters, clothes, and medical attention.

At this time, Camp El Guacio continues serving the community in different ways; serving Presbyterians, other churches, and groups as a retreat and conference center. Camp El Guacio is also a hosting site for mission groups coming to this area to carry out their mission projects. We are ready to welcome and provide housing, meals and, fellowship to groups wishing to come to Puerto Rico to continue helping in the recovery efforts.

Mission Groups represents churches, organizations, or other groups, who volunteer to offer their time and talents in the recovery effort. Mission groups, in Camp El Guacio, will aid in the restoration of the areas affected by Hurricane María, in the Northwest Area of Puerto Rico: San Sebastian, Lares, Las Marias, and Maricao.

We seek to live Christ's love, welcome all people and joyfully serve God.