An Open Letter to the Church Van

Jacob Eckeberger
October 21st, 2016

We’re excited to have Kerry Loescher as one of our NYWC speakers. Check out more information HERE.

Dear Church Van,

I wanted to write and say thank you for all of your service. You have taken some AWESOME volunteers, tons of teens, and me on all kinds of adventures over the years.

I am thankful for the time your A/C quit on the hottest day of the summer just as we were within a couple of miles of reaching our amusement park destination.

We could see the giant roller coasters! What we could not see was the urgent need for the kids to move up in the van and for the backseat to be empty. We didn’t know that we would be the third wreck of the day in a construction zone on the interstate.  Everyone had hit the brakes and the semi truck behind us didn’t have enough room to stop in time. Your back seat would become a permanent part of the seat in front of it. You, dear van, looked so bad on the outside, the first responders were afraid of what they would find once they pried open the door. We didn’t make it to the amusement park that day but you made sure we all made it home in one piece.

I am thankful for the time that you didn’t get offended at our temperature control creativity on the way home from the wettest youth camping trip in history!

It had rained all day and all night.  Our tents had standing water in them and the teens joked about how Noah would be picking us up in the ark to take us home in the morning. The day dawned bright and sunny (of course). We loaded you up to head back to church looking and smelling like a bunch of wet, dirty dogs and you still welcomed us. Everything and everyone was soaked so badly that the humidity inside was so high we needed to crank the A/C to keep your front window from fogging up. Cranked A/C + soaked kids = need for creative solution. The kids crammed feminine products in the air vents in the back to help block the blasting cold air so they wouldn’t freeze to death. (Years later we still laugh about this trip!)  I really wish you could have seen the faces of parents as they worked to help unload all the gear and restore order to your muddy, wet interior!

I am thankful for the time you helped us haul water to the mission team across the border.

We loaded you up with big plastic jugs and headed out. You went through customs without a problem and handled the dirt roads like a professional. I know I hit the pothole a bit too fast but you didn’t even flinch when several of the 10-gallon plastic jugs cracked on impact sending a flood through the cargo and out your back door. We could only laugh and you just kept rolling right along.

I am thankful for the sanctuary you provided for important conversations and prayers that would change lives for eternity.

There was just something about a road trip with you that caused hearts to be softened and laughter to abound. In your faithful care, there were many young people who asked questions and dreamed about a life that mattered for God’s Kingdom. Thank you too for putting up with all the silly jokes and fart stories!

I am grateful for your faithful service.


The Youth Worker

kerry_smallKerry Loescher works as an instructor at Oral Roberts University teaching Youth Ministry, Outreach, and Leadership.  With more than 20+ years of profession youth work experience, Kerry’s passion is training leaders to help young people and their families connect the dots between Jesus and their everyday lives.  She and her husband Randy are the proud parents of 5 kids and a random plant that has somehow managed to survive.

Jacob Eckeberger

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the YS Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of YS.