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Bethel Baptist Church

Serving In Alaska
August 4, 2018
Community: Wasilla
Partner: Mat-Su Covenant Church
Staff: Mel Frecceiro (Trollman), Terence Lindeke

We Arrived!

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 2:00 AM

So happy to finally be in Alaska! We got a few hours to sleep before we got up for church. But our clocks told us we are still on east coast time, so we actually woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed, ready to seize the day!

We Arrived!

Church Service

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 2:04 AM

After breakfast, we attended church at Mat-Su Evangelical Covenant Church in Wasilla. The Pastor, Rick Millikin, preached a great sermon, and we were familiar with the tunes the worship team sang. The people at the church were friendly and inviting. It was a very nice morning.

Church Service

Meeting Pastor Rick

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 2:20 AM

We sat down with Pastor Rick and his wife, Lesa, after church for lunch and conversation. He shared a lot about his church as well as Alaska in general. He was a wealth of knowledge, so we threw quite a few questions his way.
Meeting Pastor Rick


by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 2:27 AM

We took some time in the afternoon to get to know Alaska better. We went on a hike to Thunderbird Falls. It was beautiful! We had a lot of fun chatting along the way as well.

Thunderbird Falls

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 6:29 PM

We took a group selfie at the overlook for the falls. It was beautiful. Some of our team members hiked down to the river too to get up close and personal with the falls. It was a perfect Welcome to Alaska activity.
Thunderbird Falls

Mirror Lake

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 6:33 PM

After our hike, we headed over to a lake called Mirror Lake that rests at the base of a mountain. We had a pavilion all to ourselves and had grilled burgers, watermelon and some other sides. It was a neat place to come together and fellowship over a meal.
Mirror Lake

Dough Boys

by Mel Trollman | August 6, 2018 6:38 PM

Our PPM staff introduced us to dough boys, which is made by cooking crescent roll dough over the fire, dipping it in butter and adding whatever toppings to it you would like, like brown sugar, chocolate, marshmellows, etc. We had s'mores too, but the dough boys were the bigger hit with all of us experimenting and Sandy rating our techniques. We tried grilling them, putting them in cast iron hobo pie makers, wrapping dough around mallow sticks, putting cheese into them... There are no ends to what you can do with a dough boy. 
Dough Boys

On the Radio

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 1:40 AM

Pastor Rick hosts a Christian radio talk show in the mornings called Lifted Up. A few of us volunteered to jump on the show as special guests. We read a bit of scripture and talked about ourselves and what we are doing in Alaska this week. One topic we covered is how we can be missionaries in our own backyard! It was a very cool experience that we will likely get to do again later this week.

On the Radio

Thrifter's Rock

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 1:52 AM

We divided our group up into three teams. Matt and our two nurses went to shop for medical supplies to put together kits that will be taken to the remote Alaska villages when Pastor Rick visits them in October. A handful of folks went to help an older couple in the church with some projects, and the rest of us went to a place called Thrifter's Rock to volunteer. It is a beautiful thrift shop with a purpose.

When you walk in the shop, it is warm, inviting, uplifting Christian music is playing, and the artistic way everything is displayed is so unique. Everything in the store is donated, the workers there volunteer their time, and the money they make funds local ministries as well as global outreach.

Thrifter's Rock

Learning More

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 1:59 AM

Vicky, one of the store's managers who actually invited our team to come and serve, wanted to share a bit about the store and how it got started. She talked about how a woman in their church had a dream where God told her to start a thrift shop.

And what a blessing it has been! They outgrew their original store quickly, moved into a bigger place, and now have a second store in the next town. God fills their cup continually with blessings. She said no one would complain if God kept filling their bank account. Well that is what God is doing with Tbrifter's Rock, only he keeps filling their account with clothes, kitchen appliances and other donations to fill their shop. It was a cool perspective!

Learning More

Hard at Work

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:03 AM

Organizing, sorting, lifting, moving, tossing, cleaning, pricing, tagging... our Thrift Shop crew worked hard! Aaaaand we might have done a little ministry support shopping on the side too. Doing what we can to help!
Hard at Work


by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:13 AM

There is an older couple in the church who recently got hurt in an accident. The wife, named Jynnie, fell and broke her hip. Her husband fell with her and broke 3 ribs. They are both in walkers now and are currently living with their children. In the meantime, Jynnie's daughter is trying to support her parents by sorting through items in their house that they do not need and should sell.

Jynnie shared with us that she has been hoarding and very much needs to sell off items. We helped her by pulling out furniture, shelving and other items from a storage unit. She actually mustered up enough strength to come out and sit on the porch, giving us helpful direction while we worked. Her son in law photographed the items to be listed on Craig's list. We stacked it all closely together and tied them up with tarps to protect them from the weather. Jynnie's hope is that it won't be long before people come to purchase the furniture.


Moose Poo

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:18 AM

Chris was a trooper. He mowed and mowed, and probably would STILL be happily mowing if we had left him at Jynnie's house. He even fixed the mower he used all afternoon so it would run. In addition to that, he found moose poop, which came in handy when we bagged some up to share with our friends serving at the Thrift shop. That's right, we collected moose poop in Alaska.
Moose Poo

Clean Up

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:20 AM

So as Chris made a big mess in the yard with his mower, the ladies swooped in and cleaned up after him!
Clean Up

After Photo

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:23 AM

Whew! It took a while, but after a lot of grunting, lifting and sweating, we were able to put all the items in a huddle, wrap them up, and take a photo to show off our furniture burrito. Jynnie was so so appreciative of our team coming out to help her.
After Photo

Praying for Jynnie

by Mel Trollman | August 7, 2018 2:26 AM

Before we left, we all came inside to pray for Jynnie. We prayed for her and her husband's swift recovery, and that God may send people to purchase her furniture.
Praying for Jynnie

Food Pantry

by Mel Trollman | August 8, 2018 2:38 AM

New Hope on the Last Frontier Church in Anchorage has a food pantry ministry every Tuesday. They open up their doors to anyone who needs to come for food. The visitors come into the church where they have a little cafe serving cookies and coffee, a waiting area and chapel. There is always a little chapel service held, for which we were invited to sing at today, and then the visitors are each called by name to go and shop for food.

In this photo, Adam the director is telling us about the food pantry and why they do what they do. He is also giving us some good advice when working with the varied clients.

Food Pantry

Shopping Assistance Training

by Mel Trollman | August 8, 2018 2:40 AM

In this photo, a long-time volunteer named Ariel is explaining the do's and dont's of shopping assistance, and prepares us for how to handle different scenarios should a questionable moment pop up. She trained each of us on how to correctly help each visitor shop for groceries, how many of what item to take, etc.

Shopping Assistance Training


by Mel Trollman | August 8, 2018 2:41 AM

There is a room they set up to look like a little grocery store. A volunteer from the church pushes a cart and helps each guest pick out food from each shelf. At the end of the shopping trip, there are more volunteers waiting to offer assistance with carrying bags out to the parking lot. Our team got to both help shop and carry bags!


On Air

by Mel Trollman | August 10, 2018 4:25 AM

Wednesday morning, three more of us appeared on the morning radio show with Pastor Rick. Meanwhile, the rest of us listened live from the church while eating breakfast. Erika presented Pastor with a $200 gift card to go towards purchasing fruits and vegetables for people in the villages he will visit this fall.

On Air

A Surprise Blessing

by Mel Trollman | August 10, 2018 4:34 AM

We received amazing news after returning from the radio. Someone who was listening to the show wrote in that they had decided to match our $200 donation. They also offered to contribute to our barbeque we planned to hold Thursday night if we needed anymore food. This picture shows our reaction and enthusiasm at hearing the news right before we broke out clapping.

A Surprise Blessing

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tracey schaaf

August 6, 2018 5:59 PM

In my thoughts and prayers! Love the HIKE to Thunderbird falls. Enjoy serving in Alaska!

Marla Holland

August 6, 2018 3:41 PM

Thanks for the link??. Praying for all?. Great to see pics and getting updates.


August 6, 2018 12:34 PM

After listening to the radio interview - thinking we need to start a new ministry at Bethel when you get back - the "Matt and Brandon Talk Show" each morning from the studios of Bethel Baptist Church and we will go steal those 15 million listeners from Rush!


August 6, 2018 12:22 PM

Hey guys - listening to Brandon right now on the radio! Love y'all and excited about the work God is doing in and through you this week! You Bethel Family is praying for you! Give 'em Jesus!

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