Side X Side
Youth Summer Mission Trip 2020
June 6-14, 2020 / Birmingham, Alabama  

Welcome to Side x Side 2020.
In June of 1871 a group of investors (comprised of cotton planters, bankers, and railroad entrepreneurs) known as the Elyton Land Company, purchased land at the cross-section of two major railroads. The city lies at the foot of the Appalachian Mountains and is rich in iron ore, coal, and limestone. One of the only places worldwide to have the three minerals in such close proximity, the investors wanted the name to reflect the largest industrial center in England and therefore named it Birmingham.
In 1873 the growth of the area was hindered by an outbreak of cholera and a Wall Street crash.  However, soon after, the area began to develop at a rapid rate.  By the 20th century Birmingham was growing so quickly it became known as the "Magic City", referring to its ability to grow like magic in population and industry in a short amount of time.
In the 1950s and 1960s the people of Birmingham endured a life that many of us cannot fathom.  Documented history tells us there were bombings, riots, segregation, and resistance to our African-American neighbors. Due to this, Birmingham is often referred to the as the "cradle of American Civil Rights Movement."
Fast-forward to the 21st century and you find a revitalization of Birmingham from steel, furnace, and railroad industries to a medical and banking mecca. The transformation benefitted many but left a few "behind", causing hardship through job loss, housing crisis, and an increase in poverty.
In Hebrews 11:1 we read, "Faith is having confidence in what we hope for and assurance in what we do not see." The people of Birmingham have had to have faith, at times GIANT FAITH, to sustain them through the often tough and difficult days.
God has called you to be his hands and feet in the city of Birmingham and its surrounding area. You have answered the call and will travel to the city to help strengthen the faith of the people of Birmingham, and in turn your faith in God will be strengthened as well.
May God shine in and through you as you share your heart and gifts with the people of Birmingham.
Thank you for saying "yes"!