BRIEF: Student learns life lessons from mission trip in Pontiac


Warner and others provided support to low-income Pontiac families in need of help by doing things like working on houses.

Maya Subramanian, Staff Writer

During the warm months of summer, most high school students can be found poolside, at the mall, or simply hanging out with friends making the most of their remaining childhood; however, this past August, freshman Justin Warner took on the more daunting challenge of working strenuously and passionately on a mission trip in low-income areas in Pontiac.

“We would wake up at 5:30 am every morning. We would not have much down time, and we were pushed until almost midnight every night until lights out at 12:30 am. Then we’d wake up the next morning and do it all again,” Warner said.

Warner became involved through a high school ministry in his church, Faith Lutheran Church. He went into the experience hoping to make a difference in the lives of those who need it.

“We fed over 500 adults and kids, taught for over six hours a day and played games with the kids in the neighborhood,” Warner said. “We played a lot of music and sang gospel and had real connections with some of the kids and people we met.”

Looking back, Warner feels that the experience has changed his perspective on many things, and he tries to carry the lessons he learned from the trip into his life now.

“I think this has made a huge impact on my life now and for the future.” Warner said. “[I am very fortunate] compared to some kids whose only meal of the day was the one we gave them, who have two pairs of clothes in all, and who live in small houses with lots of people. That in all made a big impact on how I look at life and other people.”