Culture of Life Experience

IMG_1255 editedDo you think about China’s changing role in the world and wonder what the future of China may hold? Would you like to learn more about Christians and the growth of churches in China? Is there a place in your heart for China’s orphaned and abandoned children? Are you committed to the growth of a culture of life, especially in the world’s most populous nation?  Then join us for an amazing Culture of Life experience in China!

The focus of our trip will be serving those most in need – abandoned children who are sick, dying or have serious birth defects.  We’ll help care for medically fragile infants and older disabled children.  Our days will be spent loving and nurturing these babies as well as spending time with toddlers and school age children.

Part of our time will be spent helping a local Catholic outreach to the children of migrant workers and disadvantaged families in the local community.

Our group will also spend time visiting and helping at a home for women with crisis pregnancies.  These are (often unmarried) women who have chosen life for their babies, despite lack of support from their family, friends and community.

From Beijing we’ll travel by bullet train to Taiyuan, the capital of Shanxi province.  In Taiyuan we’ll have the chance to visit the beautiful Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. We’ll visit the holy mountain known as Ban Si, where Mary is said to have appeared.  At Ban Si we will enjoy a visit to a historic church, and a tranquil rosary garden and pleasant hike up the mountain, which is topped by a majestic Christ the Redeemer statue.

From Taiyuan we’ll make a short trip out to the small village of Dongergou.  Dongergou was the site of a thriving Franciscan mission in the early 1900’s and is the place where Blessed Maria Assunta Pallotta worked and died.  We can visit her shrine and learn more about her life and work.  While in Dongergou we can climb Seven Sorrows Mountain (and pray the Stations of the Cross along the way), which tradition holds is the site of a Marian apparition.   From there we’ll travel to the nearby village of Liu He Cun which has a large Catholic majority and an interesting history of conversion.

Of course, we’ll make time for some touring of China’s incredible historic sites.  We’ll climb the Great Wall, and walk in the footsteps of the Ming and Qing emperors as we explore the Forbidden City.

South CathedralWhile in Beijing we’ll visit the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, first built in the 1600s.  It was destroyed several times; the current church was re-built in 1904 and remains one of the best known Catholic churches in China.

We’ll also have the opportunity to visit the tomb of Matteo Ricci, the Jesuit missionary who was instrumental in bringing the Christian faith to China in the late 1500’s.

Near the end of our trip we’ll visit Beijing’s famous Pearl Market, where you can pick up pearl, jade, and cloisonné gifts before you head back home.

Are you qualified?  You do not need any Chinese language skills, but you do need a great love for children, a flexible, adaptable and outgoing personality, a good sense of humor, a great deal of patience & stamina, and an adventurous spirit.

Dates: June 25 – July 13, 2015

Lodging: We’ll stay in local guesthouses in both Beijing and Shanxi.  Rooms are double occupancy, simple but with all the basic amenities.

Meals:  Most of the time we’ll eat simple meals of local Chinese cuisine; occasionally we’ll treat ourselves to some familiar western foods.  We’ll indulge in some specialties like Peking roast duck and Mongolian hot pot!  While we are in Shanxi we’ll try out the local noodle dishes the province is famous for.  Our group will also have the chance to learn from a local family how to make traditional Chinese dumplings.

Children: Families are welcome, but due to the rigorous travel schedule, the nature of our volunteer work and the complex issues we’ll be facing and discussing, the minimum age for participants is 12 years (accompanying parents).

Cost: $3,500 per person, based on double occupancy.

  • What’s included:  We’ll provide airport transfers, lodging, all local transport, and all meals.
  • What’s not included:  You need to cover the costs of your own airfare to/from Beijing, passport, visa and spending money.

China Little Flower’s Culture of Life Trip is operated by Assunta Ventures, LLC.  All profits are donated to China Little Flower for the care of abandoned children in China.

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