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Love and home improvement at WorkCamp

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After working side by side with complete strangers for a week, crews welcomed the residents of their worksites, now lifelong friends, to a special lunch on the last day of WorkCamp. More than 30 residents and their families came to thank their crews for all their hard work and for the love they received over the past week.


“They came as strangers but they left as family.” WorkCamp resident

They received an outpouring of thanks in return from their crews who would not have been able to have the WorkCamp experience if the residents had not opened their homes to them. 

During Friday’s program both residents and crews gave emotional testimonials in front of the whole group which witnessed to the powerful effect WorkCamp has on both sides. 

“We had a wonderful experience,” said one of the residents. “They came as strangers but they left as family.”

There were many tearful goodbyes between the two groups as they said their final farewells and promised to keep in touch. Some of the residents even invited their crews to come back and visit anytime.


“When we got here I just thought we were coming down for a week to do construction projects for people in need in the community but it’s much more than that,” said adult leader Mark Dargis. “We were getting together in parish groups for spiritual discussions, we were going to Mass every day, we had what I call the Catholic rock concert every night, the evening program where all 1200 people get into the gym at one time and sing songs and listen to inspirational stories and talk about the difficulties of keeping your faith in modern times. It was truly unexpected, something I really hadn’t planned on experiencing.” 

After three years in the Massaponax area WorkCamp will be moving next summer to a new location to bring the WorkCamp experience to a new area in need of a little love and home improvement. 

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2018