Super Service Saturday was a day filled with service and learning for eight Wittenberg students and three students from the University of Dayton (UD). The event was put together by Wittenberg Director of Community Service Kristin Collier and The Hagen Center in collaboration with UD’s interfaith service outreach program. This event was centered around utilizing faith and service together.
Rachel Tune, Wittenberg’s campus minister, played a large role in getting the group together and planning the day’s itinerary. The service team was given the opportunity to visit three operations in Springfield: Children’s Rescue Center, Promise Neighborhood and Second Harvest. The group was split up and sent to designated organizations.
One of the groups went to Children’s Rescue Center to meet one of the founders, Martin Rastatter. He shared his story on how he and his wife began their life journey of ministry with this organization.
“We learn the most interacting with other people, hearing their stories and sharing in what they do,” Julie Benedecto, a UD student, said.
Rastatter went on about he and his wife formed this organization in partnership with two other people. They like to incorporate faith and their Catholic and Christian backgrounds into the work they do.
The CRC is a program that welcomes children from inner city neighborhoods and lower income families to a place of safety and refuge. The children come on weekends and after school to engage in activities and to spend time interacting with positive people. They are given everything they need, from clothing to food. Most of these interactions take place at the arch, which is where student service took place. One important thing taken away from Rastatter’s insight was the pride he took in his commitment to ministry.
“I wasn’t able to fully become invested in what I was doing until I made it my life,” he said. “This means everything to me and seeing the impact our work has done makes all of it worth it.”
Following the time spent at CRC, the groups came together at a mosque in Springfield. The different groups shared their experiences over a lunch from Los Mariachis.
At Second Harvest, the team helped package food into boxes to give to people in need, and at Promise Neighborhood they helped make and decorate pots to help grow vegetables. Each person could take away something different from the day. All three of these organizations are supported by various religious entities in Springfield and each helps impact people in need.
The value in taking part in such a great service opportunity was summed up best by Collier.
“The collaboration between students and ministers of University of Dayton and Wittenberg volunteer students helped contribute to the local Springfield community,” Collier said. “Through the interfaith focus, we were able to learn and apply our own faith in a positive way to help the community. This kind of work is integral in building a better community where we live.”