Serving Christ through Dusty Boots
Fiona Wright, Penrith Anglican College
[This article was originally published in The Real Australian Winter 2021 edition]
Continuing Penrith Anglican College’s long tradition of serving Christ through our involvement in the Dusty Boots program, in the April school holidays a group of Year 12 students and staff travelled to Ridgecrest Christian Education and Convention Centre to serve the town of Wellington.
Over the week, the students served the local area in the following ways:
- Serving the campsite itself through painting, clearing and weeding
- Leading worship at a local church
- Weeding and pruning at the Burrendong Botanic Gardens and Arboretum in preparation for an Open Day
- Working for individual people in Wellington doing gardening and general maintenance
- Partnering with many local agencies to be part of Youth Day where we ran a craft table making pet rocks and bracelets, operated the snow cone machine, served sausage sandwiches & ice creams and played sport with the children who came.
The team also enjoyed a fun day out at Western Plains Taronga Zoo.
It was a privilege to spend time with students who worked so well as a team, gave of their time and energy to work hard for others and showed great character as they served. They treated those whom they served with respect and began relationships which future teams will build on as the College continues to serve the community of Wellington.
“This has been the best experience of high school,” says Year 12 student Sophie. “To be able to build a relationship with the community and further the relationship with my peers was the highlight of my trip and I made memories that will last a lifetime.”
"The school created an opportunity for me to not only grow closer to my friends, and with the staff, but to connect with locals from the area as we served them,” says Year 12 student Jack. “Being able to appreciate their stories and serve them was a real blessing and easily a highlight of my schooling experience.”
Thirty-five Year 11 students will return to Ridgecrest and Wellington in the June/ July school holidays. We hope to continue to serve others, grow the character of our students, build on relationships both within the team as well as with the people of Wellington and the staff of Ridgecrest, while serving Christ.