When I talk about how I feel like UUs don't do as much charitable work as they should, I am NEVER talking about my youth group.
My YRUU kids collect canned food and sort it at the All Souls Food Drive, they recycle printer cartridges, they assemble medical kits for migrant workers. They pretty regularly serve at soup kitchens and leftovers from our events invariably go to a food bank. A dozen of them go to El Salvador every year to do community development projects.
And they hold fundraisers.
Ye gods do they hold fundraisers. They do a coffeehouse for "Save the Music," they sponsor kids in developing countries, last year's Monopoly Tournament was for La Clínica del Pueblo and they did a Murder Mystery Dinner for Beacon house. They went on a help-the-homeless walkathon. They do Unicef Boxes.
On the 26th, they are having this year's "Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre," which will be for secondary education in El Salvador. Or something like that.
Naturally, we're broke. Our youth director announced this on Sunday.
"Well, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it." One of the youth said, then went back to talking about doing some sort of environmental project.
"No, seriously. We're at the bridge. We don't get much from the congregation and the re-usable shopping bags we were selling didn't sell well. We need money."
Yep, the fundraising-est youth group I've ever seen needs to do some fundraising for itself.
And it is really odd for us/them/me.
We have a plan to fix it, of course.
We're going to have a "Parents' night out" when we will offer babysitting services at the church for several hours on a Friday or Saturday night. Parents can park their kids with us, then go have dinner and a movie. The nice thing is, our youth will probably be willing to repeat the trick as many times as is necessary to ease our budget crunch.
But as the youth are selling tickets for it, I wonder how it will be for them to be asked "what's it for?"
I'm hoping that instead of worrying that they aren't answering "homeless kids," they will confidently look the questioner in the eye and say "We're going on a retreat."
While I'm talking about it, if anybody in the DC area would like to come to a murder mystery dinner, it is coming up. I'm writing the script. It should be awesome.
And it's for a good cause...