Eye of the Gale

Doing Good

Student’s mission work is a way of life

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Doing Good

LHS junior, William Grandstaff volunteers in Ecuador, South America.

LHS junior, William Grandstaff volunteers in Ecuador, South America.

Photo courtesy, William Grandstaff

LHS junior, William Grandstaff volunteers in Ecuador, South America.

Photo courtesy, William Grandstaff

Photo courtesy, William Grandstaff

LHS junior, William Grandstaff volunteers in Ecuador, South America.

Morgan Orr, Community Editor

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William Grandstaff, a Lancaster High School junior, has made doing good works a way of life. Grandstaff recently completed a mission trip to Ecuador in South America, to help a community there build the infrastructure for a future school, and to renovate a family’s home.

The people of Ecuador’s rural areas are very poor. In fact, one million out of its 13 million inhabitants live in extreme poverty. Grandstaff’s church mission group spent more than a week in the country to excavate the foundation for a future school, dig a hole for a septic tank, and poured concrete for a family’s kitchen floor.

In order to travel to Ecuador, Grandstaff raised nearly $1500 on his own to pay for the trip. When
asked about the personal rewards he gets in helping others, Grandstaff said the purpose is to get involved .

“Doing good things are not doing them because you are seeking a greater reward; doing good things is a way of life. Personally, I have always grown up in a home that goes to church and is involved in many events. My parents absolutely love that I want to be involved in these things.”

This is not the first time that the high school student has raised money to cover the cost of a mission trip. Last year Grandstaff’s church went to Merritt Island, Florida to Teen Mission International.

“It was one of the best moments of my life and I could not wait to go back there,” he said.

Teen Missions International was founded in 1970 and is devoted to training young people into a lifetime of missionary involvement worldwide.

Photo courtesy, William Grandstaff
William Grandstaff and other volunteers travel to South America dig ditches.

Grandstaff said that, when helping to improve the lives of others, he and his fellow missionaries discovered that their efforts and hard work resulted in their own spiritual growth.

“Living a good life should not include the reciprocity ideology that doing good things should always have a returned favor or material item that benefits you,” he said.

Many high school students may feel exasperated by homework or a part time job and cannot fathom taking on such an important task such as a mission trip because they assume they cannot handle it. But research shows that doing good for others has both emotional and physical benefits. It is well documented that volunteering may lower depression and boost positive feelings.

According to Psychology Today, “the positive feelings associated with helping others is that being pro-social reinforces our sense of relatedness to others, thus helping us meet our most basic psychological needs.”

For Grandstaff, doing what he can to help others is something he wants to incorporate routinely into his life and he is already planning for a future international mission trip to the Dominican Republic.

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