My name is Cadia, I am a student at the University of Wisconsin Madison where I study Psychology. I am a girl from Wisconsin who went to Louisville, Kentucky this past summer to serve as an urban missionary through Love Thy Neighborhood. Why you may ask? Well, the Lord put this ministry on my heart when I first heard about them at Urbana and then he was faithful to have me accept that call for me to go that following summer. I want to share my experience of the LTN Summer Intensive program and also tell you how my time at Love Thy Neighborhood has become an important asset to how I live my life now.
Love Thy Neighborhood’s strategic schedule of volunteering, growing, and learning really allowed me to seek out God more. I also gained a new perspective on the importance of how he loves us and how he specifically is calling me to love my neighbors and more specifically my friends, neighbors and strangers here in Madison, WI.
Because of this program I have learned so much about the passions God has placed in me. By working with women who faced unplanned pregnancies, I was able to gain new understanding and compassion for women and their families. I was able to see and learn that I personally love children and love helping them and their parents thrive in a world that barely allows them to survive. Not only was I able to learn my own personal love for them but I was also challenged to see how God cares for them too.
This experience has compelled me to volunteer at the local pregnancy center near my college campus weekly and also apply to work at a place on my campus which focuses on providing support and assistance with alcohol and drug addiction. God has shown me that these things are a vital part of my future career and that he wants me to continue using me this semester and for future semesters to provide care and love to hurting people.
Another thing that LTN has taught me is the importance of living my life intentionally and with God’s Kingdom on my mind. This semester, God is challenging me to get to know and love my neighbors in my apartment, classes and overall city better. He has already provided me with neighbors and friends to help guide and show around who are new to campus. I am excited to now walk around campus and be more aware of my neighbors and not just put my earbuds in and rush to class.
Lastly, this program has provided me with lovely friends from all over! I have loved keeping in touch, praying for their lives and planning on seeing my beautiful brothers and sisters in Christ again. The LTN community has become like family to me and I love them all so dearly and am forever grateful to God for providing me with them. Love Thy Neighborhood has impacted my life in so many ways and I am so blessed to have been a part of the Summer Intensive 2023!