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Detroit, Michigan

Trip Overview

Restore Church is passionate about seeing lives and communities in Detroit transformed by Jesus. Despite the city’s struggles, the founders of Restore Church received a vision and calling from God to bring hope and healing back to Central Detroit. The flag of the city of Detroit displays two Latin mottos: “We hope for better things” and “It will rise from the ashes.” Restore believes God does have better things in store for Detroit and through the power of the gospel, it will rise from the ashes. Be part of the work God is doing to bring His redemption to all people.

Partnering with Restore, high school teams will seek to show and tell about Jesus through the church’s summer outreach, leading Vacation Bible School, and learning from local leaders about issues of racial reconciliation, evangelism and gospel community. Because this is a leadership development experience, teams are responsible for VBS preparation prior to arrival.

The week also includes a trip to the Detroit Historical Museum or the Charles H. Wright African American Museum, the oldest museum of its kind in the U.S. Student-led prayer stations and Restore-led training will be held in the same park where the 1967 Detroit riots took place. Today, this space is regularly used by Restore Church for worship service and ministry to the community.

Teams will also assist with work projects in and around the surrounding community of the church. This trip requires your team to plan ahead with pre-trip training materials provided by Apex.

While there is little unscheduled time, we do create time for daily team devotional and debrief, giving you an opportunity to connect with your team and discuss what they are learning and how it translates to their context at home.


Destination Overview

Detroit, well known to many as Motown and the Motor City, once boasted a population of 1.9 million. The “crown jewel of the Midwest” in the post World War II auto boom, “was built on automotives and is dying on automotives,” notes Mike Hanafee, pastor of Restore Church in Detroit. Between 2000 and 2010, the city’s population declined by 25 percent and the trend continues.

For the first time, Detroit is no longer one of the nation’s 20 largest cities. While the downtown area is revitalizing, many of the city’s residents live in poverty and unemployment rates remain high.

In July 2016, the city demolished the 10,000th abandoned home with plans to remove another 30,000 vacated properties.

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