Having a LOT of fun!


By Morgan Groh Gaerke

As I was driving to work a few days ago reflecting back on UDSAP, I got those chills all over my body and I got that feeling within my heart that you get when you think back on the summer you jumped into Magoffin county. I still crave the time I had at that house, in those mountains, with those people. I still crave showering in the lake, living with people that became my best friends, going on midnight adventures, having life chats, hugging those kids when they came to us. I crave swinging on the porch swing drinking tea. I crave being frustrated, growing in such immense ways, seeing God shine so brightly. I crave time with those kids, running wild and free with them, picking blackberries, going swimming, doing crafts. I crave making time for each kid to be a kid. I crave sleeping on mattresses out back looking at the stars and realizing that my life has begun to change,

UDSAP changed my life, it truly did. It taught me how to be free, how to love and be loved, and how to just be me and by doing that you allow others to be themselves.  I crave to relive all the memories quite often but I am just so happy to live through the memories that I have. I feel blessed to have been given the chance to be a part of something that is so much bigger than myself. When I look at the UDSAP house, I am humbled by how many people have walked through that house and how many people have left with changed and full hearts. It truly is incredible.

It is still so hard to explain what happened that summer and what it means to me because God is such a big part of it and when God is so present, it is truly hard to put enough words to it. All I can say is thank you. Thank you to God for allowing me to listen to His call to go to UDSAP. Thank you for the people of Magoffin county for letting us come in and be a part of your community. Thank you University of Dayton for supporting all that UDSAP is. Thank you for all the UDSAPers who came before and for helping shape what UDSAP had become. Thank you for all the UDSAPers in the future for continuing to bring so much joy and light to something that deserves to always continue on. Thank you UDSAP 2011 for changing with me, for becoming my family, and for all the adventures.  

Finally, thank you to BT, Brother Tom, Bayyyyy Tayyyyyy  for making each and every summer happen for us all. God is so good.

Peace, Love, and Mountains,

Morgan (Groh) Gaerke

UDSAP 2011

Previous Post

Service in Reverse

by Brian Gaerke UDSAP '12 

"What is UDSAP?" is one of the hardest questions I have ever had to answer. Only those who have spent the summer in Salyersville really know, and even then no one answer will be the same. 

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A Kindred Spirit in the Mountains

by Mike Hilton   UDSAP '02

A friend and mentor once told me that if a past experience continues resurfacing it means that you haven’t fully processed it. A decade and a half after driving an old blue Chevy van out of the mountains, I find myself frequently going back to the experience, knowing there’s more to learn, more growth to come.

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