Something Bigger Than Ourselves

Let me take you to a conversation that I had with a friend in the fall of 2023. But first, I’d like to introduce myself. My name is Vivian, and I am a sophomore at the University of Alabama in Birmingham, studying to become a pediatric occupational therapist. This fall, I was discussing my summer plans, or lack thereof, to a good friend of mine. I expressed in frustration that I felt God was giving me a call to ministry that conflicted with my strong desire to spend a season in a national park. I remember asking, “Why would He make me feel this way?” Especially since I felt I would have to choose between what I wanted and what He wanted for me. My friend stopped me and exclaimed, “Wait, Vivian! I think you can do both – look up ACMNP. Maybe this is what God has for you this summer?” One week later, after reading almost the entire website and spending time in prayer, I submitted my application. A few weeks later I was accepted, and this incredible journey began.”

“Now, it is May of 2024. In two weeks, I move to Shenandoah National Park, where I will live, work, and serve for the next three months. I feel excited, nervous, hopeful, and overwhelmed. But I also feel assured, equipped, prepared, and supported. ACMNP has given me the tools and connections to enter into a season of ministry unlike any other experience I have had. They have equipped me through numerous training sessions and given me the answers to questions I did not even know to ask. A large number of this summer’s ParkLife participants attended the Colorado training in Estes Park. There, we grew close together, as teams and regions, and got to explore the many facets of relational ministry. We were given leadership assessments, and we learned how to understand what those evaluations meant. More importantly, we attended sessions and participated in discussions that taught us how to grow in those areas. Together, we worshipped, learned, laughed, and sat in the awe of our God.”

“As I, and each one of these people, gear up for a season in the parks, we leave what’s comfortable for something bigger than ourselves. Something so complex that I’ve heard is that it can only be described as the hardest and the best summer of your life. I cannot express my gratitude enough to the people who continue to make this possible. From everything in my, I offer you thanks for your contribution to sharing the gospel amid the beauty of Creation.”

“This will last forever!”

-Vivian, Shenandoah 2024


Join an experience that will transform your life

The Lord said, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Find Your Park

Attend a worship service in a park
during your next vacation