Student fundraises for mission trip

By Jessi Stone Assistant editor | Oct 16, 2013

Mason Stephens, an 18-year-old from Waynesville, will be leaving in January to spend five months on a mission trip to help others.

But Stephens needs the community’s help raising enough money for the trip. He has already raised $3,500 already but still needs $6,500 to pay for the trip. During the trip with Youth With a Mission (YWAM), Stephens will be a member of the Medical Mercy Team.

The team will distribute medicine and administer basic care to remote areas by means of a ship, The M/V Pacific Link. The ship has on-board facilities offering simple treatment of infection to life changing cataract surgeries.

In Taraunga, New Zealand, Stephens will be in an extensive Discipleship Training Program for three months before being sent somewhere in the Pacific for two months of outreach work.

Two other young men, Dan Snyder and Seth Blanton, also attend The Vine Church with Stephens and have participated in this mission training in the past year. Snyder is still serving in New Zealand on staff with YWAM. It was their commitment to the program that got Stephens interested.

A fundraising event will be held for Stephens from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25 at the Vine, 188 Depot St. in Waynesville. This event will offer homemade desserts and coffee, a silent auction and live entertainment from members of The Vine. Vine members as well as local businesses will provide silent auction items.

More than 50 items donated from local artisans and businesses, including a Grace Cathey necklace, items from Hazelwood Soap Co., Old Brick House, Frog Level Brewing, Village Framer, Panacea and Smoky Mountain Coffee Roasters.

Tickets cost $5 each or $15 for a family. Purchase tickets by calling Lori Stephens at 476-0381 or visit

Donations can also be given online at (non tax-deductible).

For tax-deductible contributions, make check out to “The Vine” with “YWAM Fund” in the memo line and send to the Vine, 188 Depot St. Waynesville, 28786. Attach Mason’s name to the check with a sticky note.

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