For the last several years I went with our church's youth group down to St. Louis where we would hang out and serve in the inner city. It's a pretty amazing deal, and I've loved doing it - but this year there was a dilemma. Patrick had tickets to Telluride - a 4-day music festival in Colorado - during the same week. I told Mike I would't be able to help him, and he was troubled because he needed the help and the driver. Patrick also had some question as to whether work would be sending him off to China for a bit during that time, so in the end he sold his tickets and I went to St. Louis. It was a long time to go without seeing him, but it was great to be back in the City, with the kids and the leaders, and help out in various ways. I did some work for my job back in Appleton, and I watched a LOT of sick kids - a crazy 24-hour flu took out most of the kids and leaders. Here are the blog posts I wrote during our time there: http://appletontruenorth.blogspot.com/search/label/St%20Louis%202013. It turns out it was the last trip MIke would lead before leaving his role as Youth Pastor at Appleton Free Church, so I was doubly glad I got to be a part of that last trip.