I want to personally thank you for your investment in this year's Pink House interns. Many of you generously responded to the opportunity to assist this group to attend the Christian Community Development Association's Conference in Kansas City in November. CCDA's Vision is to see holistically restored communities with Christians fully engaged in the process of transformation. Their Mission is to inspire, train, and connect Christians who seek to bear witness to the Kingdom of God by reclaiming and restoring under-resourced communities. The conference experience was full of inspiration, training and connection.

   My CCDA experience was very meaningful to me. I was challenged by and learned so many wonderful things. One of my biggest takeaways was learning about how I can be a better teacher and mentor to kids. I learned about moving into and gaining credibility within communities, giving every kid a voice, and making sure I am constantly reflecting the gospel through my words and actions. The theme verse of Ephesians 3:20 was also something that had a great impact on me. The fact that God is able to not only meet, but exceed our needs that we make known to him is very encouraging. It is important that I remember this in my day-to-day life when thinking about how I would love to see the world become a better place. - Josh Perkins


   Traveling to the CCDA National Conference was a transformative experience. Some ideas that were most thought-provoking for me were fundraising with equity and approaching differences between others peacefully. I also was able to see the Bible stories I knew from a different perspective, giving them a whole new meaning. One more thing that I greatly enjoyed was hearing the stories of God's faithfulness in the lives of the speakers.

   A significant encouragement I experienced during the conference was unity in Christ. In today’s challenging environment, it has been difficult for me to imagine a large body of Christians united together.  Seeing thousands of Christian people worshipping God together was life-giving and reminded me how many of us are on this journey together. -Shannon Crow


   I had such a wonderful experience at CCDA. I was encouraged to reimagine the world around me and dream of a kingdom that glorifies God. I was challenged to look at my own life and think deeply about how I am caring for people, specifically kids, and how I can do better. I was challenged to think about my church and the programs within the church and how to make my church a better version of itself. I was challenged to think about my own white space and how to make it a space for everyone to be included. 

   I loved my time at CCDA and was so encouraged by all the different races that were represented at the conference. I was amazed at how unified everyone was and how God’s Kingdom is  better than what I could ever imagine. -Michaela Kimball


   We had the privilege to hear from various speakers with a variety of expertise. One of the first people we talked to mentioned that when Jesus fed thousands of people, He started with a few loaves and fishes. If God is calling us to do something, and we don't have enough for the whole task, we can look around and realize that we have enough to start with. I also heard from a team from a local bilingual church, and was interested to hear how they do bilingual services. They said that's it's never perfect, but leaning into the awkward gap that language would normally fill and looking to communicate love, looking to form relationships, looking past the language at the person, has formed unique ties and lasting community. Those relationships are independent of saying exactly the right word or phrase. There's a lot of discomfort in both of those things, but so much opportunity! I'm taking that forward to remember when things get uncomfortable and God beckons me forward anyway. -Kaitlyn Kelley