It was a magical holiday wonderland in the Alliance Church’s hall on Saturday, Dec. 10 as the Ladies’ Tea was held.
The event was run by students from the Fellowship of Christian Students (FCS) from Wm. E. Hay Stettler Secondary Campus, with the church’s support. However, the organization of the event, from idea to planning to tea itself was all handled by the students, according to church pastor Tyler Ans.
The event sold 80 or so tickets at $10 each, but tip jars were on each table and were filled throughout the day.
Kevin Missikewitz, 14, was one of the students helping out at the tea. He, like the other young men, were dressed formally in black and white. The girls adopted the same colour scheme, setting the scene as that of a fancy restaurant.
Each table was arranged differently, with students picking a table and decorating it. From snowmen to poinsettias, from the Mad Hatter’s display to Christmas ornaments, each table was a colourful set of arrangements.
While the hall itself was a merry scene of socialization, the kitchen and hallway outside the hall was a frenetic scene of action as students and their adult helpers worked at a feverish pace to keep tea, coffee, water, and juice available, as well as fill the plates with savory dainties and sweet snacks. All of the food was made by students and volunteers.
For Missikewitz, the bright and cheerful atmosphere didn’t hide the purpose of the day. The event was a fundraiser for the group’s mission trip to Guatemala, where the youth will be helping at orphanages in and around Guatemala City, the Republic’s capital.
“This is my second time (going to Guatemala on mission),” Missikewitz said. “I’ve been there once before with a mission group from around here, with the church and some others.”
The group is going to work with Dory’s Promise, a charitable organization that runs orphanages in the city for abandoned children. The private orphanage runs on donations and labour from visiting mission groups, plus that of dedicated, year-round volunteer staff.
“Today is (not only) a fundraiser to let us go on the trip, but also to let us start the mission here, and spread the word of the Lord,” Missikewitz said. “We can hopefully inspire people around us to do good around the community.”
Ans attended the event as moral support and as a guest, as the church is not directly sponsoring the trip, just supporting the mission team as it fundraises.
“It’s amazing to see the youth take the initiative to do this,” he said. “Unfortunately, we tend to think a lot about what’s best for us. To see them take initiative and say, ‘What’s best for other people? How can we help?’
“It makes all of us proud at everything they’ve accomplished.”