Meet Joe, Our Year-Long Intern!

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Joe joined our full-time team this summer as the year-long intern. He is a longtime friend to Blueprint & we are lucky to have him! Get to know him a little more below. 

Tell us a little about yourself:

I have lived in San Antonio my whole life and I just finished college at Abilene Christian University where I studied Financial Management.

What is your history with BP? 

I have been at Blueprint for the previous 3 summers as a part of the summer staff and I’m excited to be here all year.

What are you looking forward to as the year-long intern?

It will be fun to learn from Doug and Layton, the Construction Directors. I’m also looking forward to being with the staff on a day to day basis and learning about how Blueprint Ministries runs throughout the year.

In your free time, where can we find you?

I love watching Spurs basketball and a lot of European soccer. I’m also a huge music nerd, so a lot of hours are wasted finding new music on Spotify, a music streaming service.

Favorite movie?

The Big Lebowski.

What is your favorite restaurant in San Antonio?

Probably Rosario’s, they have great Tex Mex that really captures the spirit of the city. Shout out to Whataburger for the best fast food.

Any fun facts we should know about you?

I’m an elite level nap-taker but sadly that skill is pretty useless.


We hope you enjoyed getting to know Joe a little more! Interested in working with us during the summer as a part of the summer staff or applying for the year-long internship next year? Click on the button below to learn more!

Lasting Memories

 Mary Rodriguez, a Blueprint homeowner, receives her scrapbook from volunteers working on her home.

Mary Rodriguez, a Blueprint homeowner, receives her scrapbook from volunteers working on her home.

They say "a picture is worth a thousand words," and that could not be truer of the photo-filled scrapbooks that our campers make for their homeowners every week of camp.

One of our homeowners, Johnny Williams, loves to show off the work that Blueprint volunteers did to repair the substandard living conditions of his house through the many scrapbooks made for him over the years.  But be prepared- if you visit Johnny, he has collected many photos worth far more than just a thousand words. 

 Mary and the team of volunteers working on her home.

Mary and the team of volunteers working on her home.

Every week during the summer, our groups that serve with Blueprint prepare a scrapbook to leave behind with the homeowner when their week of work is done.  The scrapbook includes pictures of the kids with the homeowners, pictures of the kids doing the different repair projects and progress throughout the week.  Relationships are built - lasting relationships - between the kids and the homeowners.  Not only are homes restored, but hope as well. In the end, long time friendships and beautiful memories remain.  

So when you visit Johnny, he will share stories with you, show you pictures of the kids, and you will see the joy and love he has for those who have served and the gratitude he has for the memories captured in the scrapbooks.

My favorite part of the week was making our homeowner smile while we gave her our scrapbook.
— Week 2 Camper, 2018

Meet the 2018 Summer Staff!

This summer we are welcoming some familiar faces & some new faces, get to know them all below! 


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Andrew Joyce-Hospitality

Hometown: Owasso, OK
School: Oklahoma Baptist c/o 2020
Major: Sociology + Spanish
History with BP: 2nd year on summer staff
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose? C.S. Lewis
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Guac
Fave Disney Movie: The Lion King

 

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Natalie Young-Media

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Southwestern c/o 2020
Major: Sociology + Communication
History with BP: 2nd year on summer staff
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose?
Carrie Fisher
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Queso
Fave Disney Movie: Treasure Planet

 

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Matthew Ebert-Construction

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Texas A&M c/o 2021
Major: Engineering
History with BP: Camper + Trip Leader
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose? Nick Offerman
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Queso
Fave Disney Movie: Coco

 

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Kelsey Myers-Construction

Hometown: Katy, TX
School: Texas A&M c/o 2021
Major: Kinesiology
History with BP: 3 years as camper
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose?
Princess Diana
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Queso
Fave Disney Movie: High School Musical Trilogy

 

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Jack MacTough-Construction

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Texas A&M c/o 2019
Major: Wildlife + Fisheries
History with BP: 2nd year on summer staff
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose?
Christopher Nolan
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Queso
Fave Disney Movie: Treasure Planet

 

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Jack Rider-Construction

Hometown: Westport, CT
School: Wooster c/o 2019
Major: Sociology
History with BP: First Timer
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose? FDR
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Guac
Fave Disney Movie: The Incredibles

 

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Joe Cuthbert-Construction/Year-Long Intern

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Abilene Christian c/o 2018
Major: Finance
History with BP: 4th year as summer staff
If you could eat dinner with one person dead or alive, who would you choose?
George Harrison
Choose One-Queso, Guac or Salsa: Queso
Fave Disney Movie: Wall-E


Interested in Summer Staff 2019? Apply below!

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The Reality of Relationship Building

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Layton Kauffman, Blueprint's Community Construction Director, has the great joy of not only working on substandard homes in our city, but also building relationships with those living in the homes. This past week, Layton had a powerful encounter with one of the residents of a home that we began work on almost a year ago. Check out his story below.

Last summer we started work on a home that was in need of a great deal of repairs. It was the home of a grandmother living with two 20 year old grandchildren and one new born great grandchild. The home was leaking from the roof in multiple spots, had no hot water, no functioning kitchen sink, and was in desperate need of sheetrock repairs and flooring.

Typically, it takes multiple weeks to begin to establish a relationship with those living in the home, so I began to reach out to one of the grandchildren named Pedro. Simply just saying hi, shaking his hand and asking him about work. At first, you could tell he wasn’t sure about us. But over the course of a few weeks, he began to open up more and more.

This past week, as I was finishing the install of the water heater in the back of the house, Pedro approached me a little sheepishly. I could tell he was trying to articulate something but did not know exactly how to do so. He stumbled through his form of a thank you for all that we have done for him and his family. You could tell he was emotional and not used to having to formulate a thank you. I was able to express to him that we do this because we love him and we love Jesus.

As I began to witness to him, he said I know I should read the bible more but I also know that I am not worthy of love. SOBERING REALITY. The ensuing conversation was all about how no one is worthy of God’s love. My sin is just as bad as everyone else's and no one is worthy of God’s love. I ended my time with Pedro with a big hug and a time of prayer. 

I am amazingly grateful for the opportunity to share the love of Jesus with our homeowners and their families. It often takes many weeks of groups coming in to break down the walls of distrust and hurt. Many times our volunteers don’t get to see these moments, yet without weekly volunteers, it is impossible for us to build these relationships. Every week a group of volunteers enters a home and they chip away at the wall that these homeowners build up, and by God’s grace and for His glory, relationships are built and the gospel is shared.

Stories like this one are why Blueprint exists-to repair homes and restore hope. Interested in getting involved with the ministry? Send us an e-mail at info@blueprintministry.com, we'd love to connect you!

Say Hello to Ron, Director of Camps & Programming!

Ron comes on board this month as the Director of Camps & Programming. He’s a veteran of youth ministry who can’t wait to get started with Blueprint. Learn a little more about him below!

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TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF:

I was born in California but raised in Texas so I can claim the best of both worlds.  I love the beach and I also love Tex-Mex and Barbecue (essentials in Texas).  I met Christ towards the end of my high school years.  I studied Speech Communications at Texas Christian University and have a Master of Arts in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA.  I have been married to my beautiful wife Bethany since June 2012.  I’m an avid snow-skier having lived and worked in Vail, CO after college. 

WHAT IS YOUR MINISTRY BACKGROUND?

During college, I had the opportunity to get my start in ministry at Laity Lodge Youth Camp where I worked for 3 summers.  Over the last 18 years I’ve had the privilege of working with students both with Young Life and a variety of churches in San Antonio, Houston and Huntington Beach, CA. I’ve had a passion for missions for years and have lead a variety of international and domestic missions opportunities. 

WHAT IS YOUR HISTORY WITH BP?

From 2006-2009, I served as the Director of High School Ministry at University United Methodist Church activities and worked with Dee Dee Sedgwick during my time there. Together we took a crew of adults and leaders to Memphis to serve with SOS (Service Over Self).  After Dee Dee made the transition to Blueprint, I helped out with summer programming at a few camps and introduced Memorial Drive Presbyterian to Blueprint when I was their Youth Director in 2010.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT WORKING WITH BP?

I believe in this mission.  Meeting tangible needs of homeowners is a great expression of the love of Christ. I also appreciate the dual priority of repairing homes but also caring for the homeowners. Displaying this kind of love opens the door to sharing the love of Jesus Christ with San Antonio. I believe home repair with Blueprint & care for the homeowners gives us a glimpse of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

IN YOUR FREE TIME, WHAT CAN WE FIND YOU DOING?

As an alumni of TCU, I’m a die-hard Horned Frog and you can anticipate me sharing my love of sports, food, movies and music with all of my friends.  You can count on my support of the San Antonio Spurs and I will happily oblige any ticket offers to attend games in person. Bethany and I love food, music and television & movies.  We love to entertain guests in our home and look forward to exploring San Antonio together.

IF YOU HAD TO EAT ONE FOOD FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, WHAT WOULD IT BE?

Mexican Food.  I’m pretty sure that heaven will be a buffet of Tex-Mex, Fajitas & Chips & Queso.

IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU WANT THE WORLD TO KNOW ABOUT YOU?

When I was 8 years old, I won tickets to a Michael Jackson concert through a contest giveaway at Burger King.  We got to see the “King of Pop” on the 2nd row.  It was great!

I’m known to make random jingles and sing them loudly to help motivate myself to keep going during the long-days of ministry.

Ron, we are so excited to have you join our team!

Meet Aubrey, Director of Hospitality & Homeowner Relations!

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Aubrey joined our team this February as the Director of Hospitality & Homeowner Relations. She's a San Antonio native with a passion to love her community well. We can't wait for you to get to meet her!

Tell us a little about yourself: 

I was born and raised in San Antonio, TX and then spent four years in Abilene studying marketing at Abilene Christian University. After moving to Austin, TX and receiving an additional degree in graphic design, I married my husband Michael and *happily* became Aubrey McKissick. Having both grown up in San Antonio, Michael and I shared a dream of learning Spanish and being able to communicate with our Spanish-speaking neighbors. We accomplished that goal when we moved to Costa Rica in December of 2016 for language school. After a year of Spanish immersion and the "Pura Vida" culture of Costa Rica, we are now confident Spanish speakers!

What is your ministry background?

Since I've been old enough to hold a baby in the nursery, and not be in the nursery myself, my sisters and I have served in Children's Ministry at Oak Hills Church. Our mom has served in several capacities in Children's Ministry at Oak Hills and is still the Preschool Director. In turn, our whole family has the pleasure of volunteering alongside her! My husband and I have also had the pleasure of serving with the Austin New Church Kids and Youth in Austin, TX. 

What is your history with BP?

As a middle school and high school student, I double-dipped youth groups and would attend activities with both my home church and University United Methodist Church where Dee Dee Sedgwick was the Youth Pastor. As part of the UUMC youth group, some of my very best friends and I traveled to SOS in Memphis, TN to help rebuild houses there. I knew Dee Dee and Blueprint had adopted a very similar model to SOS, so I was already familiar with the work that Blueprint was doing here in San Antonio. After spending many years away from my hometown, I came back to San Antonio and heard about a job opening at Blueprint. Of course, I had to apply because of Blueprint's mission and vision help to rebuild my favorite city in the world, San Antonio! 

What are you most excited about working with BP?

I'm excited to connect with our homeowners and see first hand how improved housing improves their lives'. It's also exciting to come alongside volunteers who already know the in's and out's of Blueprint! It is rare that you have an equally equipped staff and group of volunteers. 

In your free time, what can we find you doing?

My husband and I are both from San Antonio so you'll find us, with our families' and some of our best friends, eating Mexican Food at Garcia's, watching the Spurs, drinking coffee or going to the movies. My husband and I both share a love of letters and typography, so you may also catch us designing or painting something. Check out Mike's Instagram (@michaeljmckissick) to see his work and lots of Costa Rica pictures. 

If you had to eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Unequivocally anything on the menu at Garcia's Mexican Food. Give me any mixture of tortillas, brisket, rice, beans, pico and salsa...guaranteed, I'm a happy gal. 

Is there anything else you want the world to know about you?

I have three men named "Bart" in my family (my dad and two uncles on the same side), two aunts named Lezli and Leslie, and both my grandmas are named "Shirley". Sounds like we're not very creative when it comes to naming people…

I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know Aubrey a little bit more! We can’t wait for you to come meet her in person. 

We are the Same: Everyone Suffers // A Guest Blog by Joybelle Grant.

Every summer, Blueprint opens it's doors to hundreds of students who give their time and hearts to the ministry and the homeowners whose homes are being repaired each summer. Joybelle - a student from Hope Church San Antonio - shared words on her experiences this summer, check them out below. 

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My name is Joybelle Grant. I am a sophomore in high school. I attended the Blueprint Ministries mission trip with the youth group from Hope Church San Antonio this summer.  

Blueprint Ministries is an inner city mission in San Antonio, TX that finds local families or individuals who are around or below the poverty level and brings in youth groups for a weeklong camp experience. Blueprint supplies all the tools and materials to repair their homes while the youth do the labor.  

This was my first service trip. I wanted to go to serve others and have fun with the other teens. The experience impacted me in a surprising way.  It was different than walking away feeling good that I helped someone else, although that was true as well.

While working there, in a decrepit old house with the ceiling and walls falling in and layers of grime on the walls, I realized I am not the only one who suffers.  This was not a brand new idea for me.  I know that we all suffer in different ways and to different degrees.  But sometimes because of the trials God has allowed in my life I can start to believe that I am alone in my suffering.  Many of the people that we were serving had close to nothing and although I was able to appreciate how much I have materially, I felt we had suffering in common.  I felt a sameness.  There was a communication barrier and we really didn’t get to talk to our homeowner much, but I sensed a sadness.  To see so much tangible suffering around me made me feel sad, yet less alone.  It was comforting to realize I am not the only one that hurts.  
Lots of thoughts followed: Suffering isn’t necessarily all bad - God allows suffering to show us his presence and love for us in the face of hardship, many times he uses others, sometimes I can believe that because I am suffering something is very wrong with me, that’s a lie. I can look at people around me who seem on the surface to suffer less and believe that it’s unfair, the truth is that God is wiser than me and perfectly just, that I have the same worth whether I am suffering or doing well, like really valuable sometimes I even feel angry and ask, “Why am I the only one facing this kind of problem?” We all suffer to some degree, it is inevitable and within the suffering there is God’s love and peace and the comfort of others who share our burdens. This was just one aspect of my experience.

It was also so much fun.  There was a lot of fun in the dorm room with the other girls and counselors.  At the job site we had fun during the demolition phase.  There was a seemingly endlessness of cake at dinner.  There might have been a Chinese fire drill.  There was a memorable sawing of body parts of large cuddly stuffed animals during chapel.  We enjoyed some Starbucks at quite an expense of peace between the teams.  

Overall it was just a great experience and I can’t wait till next year!

Thank you, Joybelle, for sharing your experience with us! We can't wait to see you next summer. 

Interested in coming to camp next summer? Click the link below to register your youth group.

Words From a Father & Son

Every October, a group of men from Whites Chapel United Methodist Church out of Southlake, Texas begin their trek down I-35 and head to San Antonio ready to serve. This group of men doing mission together started out in 2008 with 10 people and have grown every year since. You can find them each year repairing roofs, putting up new sheetrock, fixing holes in floors, and sharing the heart of Jesus to homeowners in San Antonio. We asked a father and son, Gary & Al Kaufmann, about their experience at Blueprint - read what they had to say below: 

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"Several years ago my son Al invited me to join him on a mission trip to San Antonio. My first thought was "that would be pretty cool" working side by side with Al helping people we had never met. I have now completed my second year on this mission trip, driving almost 2000 miles round trip to join the team from Whites Chapel.

While I was very excited on the way to the first home that we were assigned to, that quickly turned to a sense of responsibility - not only to the homeowners but also to the work team. Working with Al became very easy as we were both comfortable working together. At times there was a lot of joking, other times were stressful as things didn't go as planned, but we always remembered why we were there.  At the end of the job we were always tired, always dirty, always satisfied and grateful for the chance to be of service to our fellow man.

Reflecting back on the experience I felt many different emotions: humility, thankfulness, shame (that people live in such conditions), accomplishment, and yes pride, pride in what was done for another. "

- Gary Kaufmann (Father)

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"When I started coming to Blueprint Ministry five years ago with White’s Chapel Men’s Mission trip it was an eye-opening experience.  I’m pretty handy with tools and pretty fearless when it comes to taking on remodeling projects, but these homes take it to a new level. 

Inevitably, at some point during the weekend, usually while elbow-deep in plumbing I’ve never seen, I found myself calling one of the best remodelers I know…my dad.  I’d explain the situation as best I could over the phone and he would try to diagnose it from over 1,000 miles away. After the second year of this I told him it would be a lot easier on me if he would just drive down from Minnesota and go on this trip with me! 

Ever since then my dad has made the trip to Texas for our annual Blueprint weekend.  Being so far away from each other, we don’t get very many opportunities to work together on these sorts of things.  BluePrint has given us the time together to do something we both love in a way that lets us follow Jesus’ path."

- Al Kaufmann (Son)


Interested in booking a working retreat with us? Click the link below for more info.


Meet Our Summer Staff!

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We love our summer staff who come from various places to serve in San Antonio for the summer. Learn more about them here!


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Joe Cuthbert
Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Abilene Christian University
Major: Finance
Hobbies: Basketball, watching soccer and music
Favorite Sonic Drink: Cherry Limeade
One thing you could not go a day without: Spotify

 

 

Kevin Lawler
Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio, TX/Fresno, CA
College: University of Texas at San Antonio
Major: Business Management
Hobbies: Sports, TV, sleeping, and helping people
Favorite Sonic Drink: Peanut Butter, Fudge and Vanilla Shake or Vanilla Dr. Pepper Cherry Soda
One thing you could not go a day without: Nothing

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Angel Aguilera
Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: San Antonio College
Major: Biology
Hobbies: Church and football
Favorite Sonic Drink: Green Apple Cherry Slush
One thing you could not go a day without: Snapchat

 

 

Andrew Joyce
Hospitality Team

Hometown: Owasso, Oklahoma
School: Oklahoma Baptist University
Major: Sociology and Spanish
Hobbies: Reading, music, Netflix, finding the best food in town
Favorite Sonic Drink: Banana Shake
One thing you could not go a day without: Phone

 

Natalie Young
Media Team

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Southwestern University
Major: Communication and Sociology
Hobbies: Art & binge watching Netflix
Favorite Sonic Drink: Cherry Slush
One thing you could not go a day without: Laptop and drawing tablet

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Garrett Collenback
Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio, TX
School: Sam Houston State University
Major: History
Hobbies: Basketball, reading, coffee and music
Favorite Sonic Drink: Strawberry Cheesecake Shake
One thing you could not go a day without: Coffee



 

caleb joyce
Construction Team

Hometown: Owasso, OK
School: Tulsa Community College
Major: Business
Hobbies: Roasting Coffee
Favorite Sonic Drink: Large Dr. Pepper
One thing you could not go a day without: Coffee!!!


Interested in applying for Summer Staff 2018? Just click the button below!

10 Reasons We Love Camp

As we kick off Summer 2017 here at Blueprint Ministries, check out these 10 reasons we love camp:

10) Summer Staff

College aged students dedicate their entire summer to hang out with campers and help restore substandard homes for our San Antonio neighbors. We could not be more thankful for them.

9) Campers

The steady sound of noise from a building full of campers is our favorite!

8) Sonic Happy Hour

After a day of hard work, teams will head over to Sonic to enjoy a slush...yum!

7) Homeowners

We love getting to know them, hearing their stories, and continuing a relationship with them for years to come.

6) You

Seeing adults and teens come back to serve San Antonio year after year is the greatest joy for us.

5) Friends

We love meeting and making new friends every year.

4) Hands & Feet of Jesus

We love getting to learn what it truly means to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

3) Serving Others

The joy that comes from putting on a new roof, fixing up floors, painting a house and more for our homeowners is an incredible blessing!

2) 9 Square

This is an evening favorite and the perfect way to have fun with friends at the end of the day.

1) Lives are Changed

Every week of camp, students and volunteers give their time working on San Antonio substandard homes. In turn, homeowners live warmer, safer and drier, prayers are answered, and life change happens. What an honor to be a part of this mission!

We hope you will join us this summer in prayer; for our homeowners, full time staff, summer staff, adult and teen volunteers, safety, lives to be changed, and so much more!

The Big Give 2017

What is the Big Give?

The Big Give is South Central Texas’ 24 hour online day of online giving fueled by the power of generous donors, creative nonprofits, social media, collaboration, and you!

The goal of the Big Give is to support the nonprofits in our region that are committed to making South Central Texas a great place to live, work, and play.

Since 2014, 101,000 donors have given nearly $11 million dollars to over 1,600 nonprofits through the Big Give-making it one of the most successful giving days in the country.

Who is Blueprint?

Blueprint Ministries is a nonprofit organization in urban San Antonio that provides servant leadership training for youth and adults while restoring homes for elderly, disabled and low-income residents. 

Blueprint Ministries is committed to making San Antonio substandard homes warmer, safer, and drier for our inner city friends.   

How can you help?

1) "Like" Blueprint on Facebook and share our posts to your Facebook community.

2) Promote Blueprint Ministries by sharing this blog to your community.

3) GIVE: Donate to the mission of Blueprint on May 4th at our Big Give Profile. 

*If you donate between 9am and 12pm on May 4th, all donations up to $1,000 will be matched by a local foundation.

 

Thank you for your continued support of the mission of Blueprint Ministries!

 

A Year Spent with Blueprint: An Interview with Jeff Glitz

For the last year, Jeff Glitz has been Blueprint's faithful intern. Learn more about what his time at BP looked like:

-Remind us how you became involved with BP?

My brother and sister-in-law both interned at S.O.S. (Service Over Self), a partner organization that Blueprint is modeled after. So when my brother told me about Blueprint being in San Antonio, I thought it would be really awesome to be closer to him because he lives in Dallas. So I came down to visit Blueprint while in Texas and met all the people that worked here and fell in love with the organization. So the next three years I was on Summer Staff and for the past year I have been the full time intern.

-What does the life of a yearlong intern look like on a day-to-day basis?

During the Spring Break and summer it was just like when I was a Summer Staff member, working with the groups that came in for the week and overseeing the homes that we were working on. During the times that we did not have Spring Break or summer camp I would work on building upkeep and assisting with retreats. Sometimes I would go out to homes to help with previewing them or fixing little things that groups were not able to get to. I would also work with Bobby, our Camp Program Director, and go to churches in other cities to meet with them about their time at Blueprint during the summer. Every day interning at Blueprint looks a little bit different depending on what is going on during that time.

-What is your favorite BP memory from the last year?

I don’t know if I have just one favorite memory. Time spent with Doug and Layton, Blueprint’s Construction Staff, may have been some of my favorite times here. I also enjoyed the time I was able to spend with Joe and Jack, 2016 summer staffers, and getting to know them better.

-What is one significant thing you have learned in your time as an intern?

Most of the things that I have learned over the past year have been construction related. I now have construction skills that I can use in the future.

 -After a year spent in SA, have you found a favorite breakfast taco spot?

I have always been a fan of Taco Haven.

-Do you have a favorite San Antonio activity?

One of my favorite things to do is going for walks in some of the nature trails that are in San Antonio. There is one trail by the place I live that I go to at least 3 or 4 times a week to go on a walk and enjoy the peace and quiet it offers.

-What is your favorite board game to play?

I would have to say Ticket to Ride is my favorite board game, but my favorite card game is definitely Monopoly Deal.

-What is next for you?

I am currently looking for jobs in Texas and Michigan, really depending on God and following Him where He wants me to be.

Thanks Jeff for your time here at Blueprint, we miss you already!

A Day in the Life: Summer Staff Edition

Have you ever thought about what it might be like to intern with Blueprint Ministries? Every Spring Break and Summer, Blueprint hires a group of college aged men and women who want to share Christ’s extravagant hope, love and grace to both San Antonio homeowners and campers. 

At Blueprint, there are three areas where you can serve: construction, media or hospitality. We are currently taking applications for all three! Let me introduce you to two of our previous summer staffers and hear about their experience working for Blueprint.

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Tell us who you are and where you go to school:

Jack: My name is Jack MacTough, I am a Wildlife and Fisheries major at Texas A&M University, class of 2019.

Michaela: Hi! My name is Michaela. I am a junior at Trinity University where I am an International Studies Foreign Affairs major. I am a Young Life leader, in a sorority and I am a big fan of brunch.

What is one fun fact about yourself?

J: I once shut down a hospital for two weeks. 

M: I love lowercase letters.

How did you hear about Blueprint:

J: I went to Blueprint as a middle school camper for a church youth trip.

M: I lead Young Life in Alamo Heights, and my old area director heard about this opportunity to be on summer staff and thought it would be something I loved, he was right. 

What was your role at BP and what did your typical day look like?

J: I was on the Construction Team last summer. My typical day consisted of teaching middle school and high school students drywall and roofing skills as well as helping them grow spiritually and as a team.

M: I was the media intern, the actual best job that exists. A typical day for me consisted of driving around to all of the houses we were working on that week and taking pictures of the progress on the homes, the campers and the homeowners. I would then take all of those photos and form a slideshow everyday and print the best photos to help campers make their homeowners a scrapbook to remember them by!

What is your favorite memory of working at BP?

J: Working alongside Jeff, Layton and Doug (Construction Staff) and hearing them go back and forth on construction ideas was always fun and interesting.

M: This is so hard because BP played such a sweet role in my favorite summer. Watching one homeowner recover from a stroke and work alongside us by the end of the summer. Second, watching another homeowner run water through their shower after years of being without one. Lastly, forming great friendships with homeowners, campers and other interns.

Put broadly, my favorite memory of BP is the overall truth that BP gives simply to give. It's about taking time to serve, and give yourself away and continuing to do so when it is 102 degrees and you are covered in fiberglass splinters from the roof shingles for the 8th week in a row. When you have a million other places you could be but you choose to serve big and love big. It is absolutely beautiful if you ask me.

 

 

If you had one super power, what would it be?

J: The power to refill anything I want. If my bank account was empty, refill it. If my fridge was empty, refill it. 

M: Probably to teleport, I would likely be on time more often.

If you are interested in our summer staff internship, you can fill out an application now or contact our Camp Program Director for more information at Bobby@BlueprintMinistry.com

Blueprint Christmas: An Interview with Taylor Mooney

What is Blueprint Christmas?

Blueprint Christmas is an opportunity for us to further love on our homeowners through the gift of Christmas presents. We are blessed with wonderful volunteers that want to love on our homeowners with us. These volunteers pick up gift tags at various locations and buy Christmas presents for families whose houses we have worked on in the past.

 

What are gift tags?

Gift tags are blue paper ornaments that have an individual’s gift request. They will have a name and an item the person would like for Christmas. These gifts range from slippers to an occasional stove (if the family doesn't have a working one).

 

Where can you find a gift tag?

Several churches will have them, including: University UMC, The Park North, The Park Midtown, Alamo Heights Baptist Church, 210/Arsenal Church, and more. There will also be some at the Fairview Coffee Shop! You can also contact Taylor Mooney at Blueprint to get connected.

 

Who do we give gifts to?

We give gifts to any homeowner that Blueprint has worked with. We give a gift to every adult and two gifts to every child, as well as a grocery gift card for the household.

 

How can somebody get involved?

You can pick up a gift tag and buy a present for someone; you can even pick up gift tags for an entire family. The gifts then get wrapped by you and dropped off at Blueprint. We also have a delivery day where you can come to Blueprint, pick up a household's gifts, and deliver them to that family at their house. You can chat with them and get to know why we love them so much. I would highly recommend that you spend some time praying for each other. This is such a fun thing to do with your family and friends. 

 

You can do one of the above or both. Either way, we would love having you.

 

Why do we do it?

This is less about the act of giving presents and more about the act of tangible love. Blueprint is always about proclaiming the love of Jesus, and giving Christmas gifts is a hands on way of showing that love. 

 

When we call the homeowners to get their gift requests, we also ask for prayer requests. We are guaranteed to talk and connect with over 180 homeowners every year. The Blueprint Staff then gets to spend the next year praying for all of those homeowners.

 

When volunteers deliver the presents, they have the opportunity to meet our families where they are at, much like Jesus does with us. Both sets of people have the opportunity to become one in prayer and thanksgiving, as they talk and pray with each other.

 

Come celebrate Christmas with us!

Meet Amy, Our New Administration & Communications Director!

Amy recently joined the Blueprint team as the Director of Administration & Communications. If you have ever met Amy you know she is a day changer, bringing big smiles and joy wherever she goes. We can't wait for you to get to know her a little better! 

BPM: Where are you from and where did you go to school?

Amy: I am from Katy, TX...and I went to school at the greatest university in the nation, Texas A&M University! Thanks and Gig'em.

What is your ministry background?

I worked for seven summers at Laity Lodge Youth Camp and spent my weekends of college at Laity Lodge Family Camp. I was also a Children's Pastor in the Alamo Heights area for the past three years. 

What brought you to Blueprint?

I was in my role as a Children's Pastor for the last three years, and during the third year I felt the Lord calling me to something new...five months later, He opened up the door to join the Blueprint team. I first heard about Blueprint when my friends at Young Life spent time volunteering during a spring break camp. I was immediately drawn to the vision of Blueprint and could never have imagined joining this awesome group, but God surprises us in really great ways!

What are you most excited about working here?

I am most excited about coming alongside the Blueprint team and walking into the mission of Blueprint. I have the opportunity to share stories about what is happening at Blueprint through our social media outlets. It is exciting to bring people into the story of Blueprint who are not able to experience the work firsthand. 

When you're not working, what do you like to do?

I spend my time hanging out at the lake, drinking lots of coffee, exploring the outdoors, volunteering at Alamo Heights Young Life, reading, and playing Settlers of Catan (the best board game ever). 

What are your favorite movies?

Anything about football (think Friday Night Lights or Remember the Titans), basically all Romantic Comedies, and musicals...if my life could constantly break out into songs and dance numbers, that would be the dream.

And lastly, what are your three favorite restaurants in San Antonio?

1) Torchy's Tacos...I know it's not local, but it is great! 2) Osaka Sushi Bar 3) Whiskey Cake

 

We are so excited to have you join the team Amy!

 

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Get to Know Taylor Mooney, Outreach Director Extraordinaire

If you've ever volunteered in our kitchen, you've probably encountered Taylor Mooney.  She's genuine, she's really good at loving people, and she's great at keeping her cool during stressful situations.  (Just don't mention the word "spiders" around her--see below.)  Everyone can be themselves around Taylor.  She wears many hats here at Blueprint.  During the summer, she's the Mastermind of our kitchen.  You will likely find her up to her elbows in caramel popcorn or digging a spoon out of the industrial strength disposal in the kitchen (again with the keeping her cool thing).  She makes her tough job look easy.   Get to know Taylor! 

Where did you grow up and go to school?
I was born in Colorado, but I grew up here, in San Antonio. #gospursgo
I attended Baylor University - Sic 'Em Bears!

When did your interest in cooking begin? 
I don't know if I've ever had an extreme interest in cooking. I've always enjoyed cooking meals with/for my family and friends. Trying new things is always fun, too, even if it turns out disastrous.

How did you end up at Blueprint? 
I was a construction summer staff 4 years ago, after my last year of college. As far as working full-time here, that took me by complete surprise. I had set out to become a doctor or nurse, work in an inner-city clinic/hospital as I paid of loans, and then move to Uganda to work with former child soldiers. Then my junior year of college, God told me to stop and wait on him. I argued, of course, being super stubborn, but I did end up waiting on Him. It was interesting to learn to yearn for Him as I waited to see what I would be doing next, career wise. Turns out, He was setting me up to come to Blueprint.

What are some lessons you've learned in your time here?
Pans are very hot when they come out of the oven; lavender salve is excellent on burns.

I've learned how sinfully prideful I can be. God has used me working behind the scenes, in the kitchen/building, to shine a light on that sin, which I didn't even know existed. It's been a hard, but freeing lesson to learn.

People give you weird looks in the grocery store when your cart is full of mass quantities of bananas, peanut butter, salsa, and tortillas.

The goodness of God far outweighs the injustice of the world.

Most memorable thing that's ever happened in the Blueprint kitchen?
There are so many LOL moments that happen in there, usually with our hospitality intern.
Two summers ago our intern, Ashley, dropped a gallon of melty ice cream, causing it to explode all over her, the floor, and the ceiling. She was drenched. I stood there laughing at her for a solid minute before helping her clean up.
Last summer, Mara and I were trying out making popcorn for the homeowners for the first time. Our first attempt involved skillets with ill-fitting lids. There were kernels of hot, oily popcorn shooting out at us for a good while. 

What's your favorite thing about being in the kitchen?
The kitchen can be full of up to 12 new-to-Blueprint dinner volunteers who all need to know what to do at the same time. Things get CRAY in there as you're directing them on how to get a meal for 100+ people cooked, dished, and served at the same time. I love it. I also love watching these groups bond and become more of a unit as they do this. Another favorite thing about dinner volunteers is how much they love doing dishes using Old Hobart and Nessie the Water Dragon (our commercial dishwasher and hose) because, after 4 years, I am no longer the biggest fan of dishes.

What's your favorite meal to cook?
Fresh Rosemary Bread, which isn't a meal, I realize. This bread will make your entire house smell divine as it rises and bakes.

Aside from the kitchen, you are also the point person for homeowner relations.  Tell me how you love on our homeowners.
That's a hard one to answer because it often feels impossible to do it well and perfectly. It's the same for loving on anyone, whether they are part of Blueprint or not. I want to love people the way God loves me, unconditionally and impossibly perfectly. Since I'm not God, I'm still working on loving His people widely and deeply. Putting my thoughts on love aside, there are some tangible ways we at Blueprint love on our homeowners, besides repairing their homes. 
-The volunteers that repair their houses also develop relationships with them.
-As a staff, we pray weekly for our homeowners.
-We send them mail saying we've prayed for them/they're in our thoughts/congrats on big life moments/happy birthday/Merry Christmas/etc.
-We coordinate a Christmas gift delivery each December. 
-We have homeowner parties full of food and fun.
-We chat with them on the phone and visit them when they're in the mood to talk or hang out.

Tell me about your irrational fear of spiders.
First of all, it is entirely rational to be afraid of living creatures with eight legs, pincers/fangs, sticky webs that comes out of their body, and 1 TRILLION eyeballs.

With that aside, I used to like spiders when I was a wee little lass. I would pick up house spiders and let them jump around on my arms. (I literally have goosebumps just thinking about it, now.) Then one day, in 6th grade, I saw some interesting looking moss/fungus growing on a cave wall. As an intelligent middle schooler, I decided to touch it. Turns out it wasn't moss, but actually thousands of daddy long legs that fell all over my entire body. I was absolutely covered in them. I had to jump in water and run around like a ninja with muscle spasms to get them off.

Now I know daddy long legs aren't technically spiders, but getting covered in them will make you afraid of all eight-legged creatures.  Ever since then, they've been my biggest fear.

Favorite movie? 
Charlie Bartlett 

When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up? 
I wanted to be a firefighter until I came to the conclusion that fires were SUPER hot and not enjoyable.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Anything that involves my family or friends. Just doing life with people I love.
I can also binge watch TV shows as if it was a superpower. Fortunately, I have some friends who also share in this "superpower." #soultribe

 

If you are interested in hanging with Taylor, sign up to volunteer in our kitchen this summer.  You'll have a great time!  Click here to sign up.

Meet Our Summer Staff

Every year, God's provisions are evident when it comes to finding summer staff. This year they have come to us from near and far, and they are STELLAR.  They are hard-working, energizing, and fun!  We are pleased to introduce to you this year's summer staff!

Angelo

Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio
College: San Antonio College
Major: Environmental Sciences/Civil Engineering
Hobbies: Running, skateboarding, surfing, boxing, ping pong, pool, and board games
Life Dream: To build sustainable and affordable housing for less privileged people all around the globe, including developing countries. 
 

Deborah

Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio
College: Baylor
Major: Elementary Education
Hobbies: Baking, ultimate Frisbee, board games, paddle boarding
Life Dream: Open a school or shelter for at risk girls in a developing country
 

EJ

Construction Team

Hometown: San Antonio
College: University of the Incarnate Word
Major: Management
Hobbies: Fishing, wood working, netflixing
Life Dream: To have a community garden with fair prices so that everyone can have fresh produce


 

Jack

Construction Team

Hometown: Honolulu, HI
College: Texas A&M
Major: Forestry
Hobbies: Frisbee, climbing, driving
Life Dream: To be a forest fire fighter


 

Jeff

Lead Construction Intern

Hometown: Grand Blanc, MI
College: Olivet Nazarene University
Major: Business Admin with concentration in Non-Profit and Intercultural Studies
Hobbies: Sports, movies, being outside, serving people
Life Dream: Working for a non-profit that serves in a community in need OR working in Guatemala
 

Joe

CONSTRUCTION Team

Hometown: San Antonio
College: Abilene Christian University
Major: Finance
Hobbies: Basketball, music
Life Dream: Build my own cabin in the snowy northern wilderness where I spend my days chopping wood with my loyal family. 
 

Michaela

Media Team

Hometown: Helotes, TX
College: Trinity University
Major: International Studies and Business
Hobbies: Going to the river, baking, loving dogs, Young Life, and not sleeping
Life Dream: Work for a non-profit or work for the U.N.  Also, to be a mom. 

 

Will

Construction Team

Hometown: Edmond, OK
College: Baylor University
Major: Premed/bio
Hobbies: Writing, video games, science stuff
Life Dream: To be a pediatrician or medical missionary with a focus on toxicology or oncology

Meet Our New Program Director, Bobby Contreras

In the whirlwind of our Spring Break camps, we had the pleasure of bringing on Bobby Contreras as our new Program/Camp Director.  Bobby has been a friend of Blueprint for many years and has truly never met a stranger.  He loves people well, and we are so grateful he gets to share his gifts with our Blueprint family.  We sat down to get to know him better.  Join us in welcoming Bobby to our team!

BPM: Where are you from? 
Bobby: El Paso, TX – Look for the star on the mountain!

Tell us about your ministry background. 
I knew in high school that God wired me to serve in ministry for life.  God brought my family and me to San Antonio to work along side San Antonio Youth For Christ as well as Alamo Heights Baptist Church.

What brought you to Blueprint?
Hannah and I brought a team of students to Blueprint for camp back in 2008.  Since then we have volunteered in several different capacities. This spring Layton and Dee Dee offered me two things—good coffee and the chance to make a difference here in San Antonio.  I couldn’t say no to that!

What are you most excited about working here?  And is there anything you're nervous about?
I am excited about two things: Working along side the many teams that come from all over to Blueprint AND pointing students, adults, and homeowners to Jesus.   I’m not nervous about anything!  I am scared of the dark, but that doesn’t have anything to do with working here. 

When you're not working, what do you like to do?
Camping with family and friends. Riding bikes with the daughters. I really like great coffee!

Tell us about your family.  What are their thoughts about this new adventure?
Hannah and I have been married since 2007!  She is the love of my life.  We have been blessed with two daughters, Ella and Olive.  Ella loves kale and will devour all vegetables—seriously. She is the only student in her grade that goes to the salad bar at lunch.  Olive is fearless and her favorite thing on planet earth is to jump in puddles.  We also have a dog, Atticus. 

During Spring Break, Hannah and the daughters came and volunteered in the kitchen for dinner.  My daughters met Taylor and are still pretending to call her on their fake cell phones. This is a month later.  They crack me up.  They loved helping in the kitchen.  I have a feeling they’ll be back. 

What are some of your favorite movies?
Oh man, I love the Giver, The Mighty Ducks, and all of the Jason Bourne movies.  I always tell my wife that I’m secretly Jason Bourne.  Also, I would like everyone to know that I am Divergent. 

Top 3 favorite restaurants in San Antonio Area?
The Gristmill, Rosarios (always a fan favorite), and Bakery Lorraine (try the Cuban sandwich…Mmmm.)

Is there anything else you would like the world to know?
I love to play croquet!  Also, I’m a t-ball coach for the mighty Chupacabras, my daughters’ team.  Lastly, I only use pink highlighters. 

Bobby, we are seriously blessed to have you here.  Bring on summer time!  

Top FIVE Reasons To Be On Summer Staff

Summer always seems to get here quicker than we expect.  It's now that time of year when we are making final decisions on hiring our Summer Staff.   Layton and Jeff sat down this week and came up with a few reasons why being on Summer Staff at Blueprint rocks.  Read below, and feel free to share with your favorite college students! 

 

Top 5 reasons to be on SUMMER STAFF
(at Blueprint Ministries)
By: Layton and Jeff

          #5.  San Antonio.  Imagine a summer spent in the beautiful Alamo city.  This place has so much to offer.  With your weekends off, you can explore one of the nation’s largest cities and all of its local hot spots. You can enjoy the leisure of the River Walk, the atmosphere of Pearl Brewery Area, the history of the 6 local missions (including the Alamo), the screams of Sea World and Fiesta Texas, the tranquility of gorgeous city parks, and the shopping of countless malls with endless sales.

          #4. Career Building.  Nothing says “hire me” on an application more than a summer of service at a non-profit. It shows dedication to one’s own awareness and personal sacrifice. You will also learn basic construction skills and hands on problem solving.  Not to mention you get to use power tools.  Serving with Blueprint will take you out of your comfort zone and prove that with God’s help, nothing is outside your realm of expertise.

          #3.  A Summer of Free Room and Board.  Your living expenses are included in your service while you’re working here. Your room and board is covered along with any gas you use for the ministry. You get to eat, sleep, and drive for free. Not only that but… wait for it…you get PAID!

          #2.  Relationships Galore.  Not only will you be living life with your fellow summer staffers, but you will also be hanging out with campers, homeowners, church leaders, and adult volunteers from all over Texas. You will build incredible relationships with the homeowners you serve and with the summer staff you work alongside. Our summer staffers are known for becoming friends for life.  Some of them are even known to get MARRIED to each other! (Shout out to Reed and Diane). Each week you also get to network with an amazing group of campers and adults from around the state of Texas.  If all of that isn't enough for you, maybe best part is that you will become part of the Blueprint family for life.  You can't beat that. 

          #1.  Servant Leadership.  You will be stretched to unbelievable lengths in your serving and leading. You will grow in your understanding of what Jesus modeled through His ministry by being a servant.   You will also grow and learn what it’s like to lead others in their own journey of self-sacrifice and service.

 

Ladies and gentleman, it really doesn't get better.  If you or someone you know may be interested in joining us this summer, follow this link to our Summer Staff page to learn more and fill out an application.  

Hear From A Volunteer, Abby Easley

By: Taylor Mooney

I’ve had the immense pleasure of knowing Abby Easley for several years through being her Bible Study leader. She is currently in 10th grade at Lutheran High School and is beautifully tuned in to serving others for God’s glory. During our camp weeks, whether it’s our Summer Camp or Spring Break Camp, she comes several days each week and works all day for us – without pay. She truly rocks. I got to interview her and get her take on being a #bpmlocal.

Taylor: How did you first hear about Blueprint?
Abby: (laughing) From you, of course.

What interested you about Blueprint and really pulled you into serving here?
Your mission statement and the way you truly love the homeowners—that it goes beyond just fixing their house. You keep up with them afterwards. I also really like organizing things.

What are some things that you’ve done for us here at Blueprint?
Haha, what haven’t I done? I’ve alphabetized forms, made phone calls, got Christmas gift requests from homeowners, baked, delivered popsicles, replaced toilet paper and paper towels, refilled water jugs, wrapped presents, put away food deliveries, swept and mopped, prayed for homeowners….

What’s your favorite thing to do?
Deliver popsicles. I like to talk to the campers and seeing all the work being done to the house. Just getting that personal connection to the campers and homeowners. I also like riding in the car with you [excuse me while my heart melts].

If you had to recruit homeowners, how would you do it?
Talk about how much Blueprint does for the homeowners—the way we express Christ’s love for them all. Investing time here is really investing time for God’s kingdom.

How is Blueprint different than other organizations?
It feels more like a family. Not like you’re working for them, but with them. I would love to work on Summer Staff here.

What’s your favorite story/memory from volunteering here?
When we were driving on the highway and the ice chest in the bed of your truck tipped over and the popsicles spilled everywhere in the bed. We had to get off the highway and pull over on the side of this access road to pick up all the popsicles. We were scrambling to get the ice and popsicles back into the ice chest before it all melted in the hot summer heat.


One thing I love about our Blueprint volunteers is that they don't just come and go; they get invested and become a part of what we're doing. Blueprint Ministries wouldn't function without dedicated volunteers.  I say this a lot because I truly mean it.  I am forever thankful for the people that show up to do whatever needs to be done so that BPM can love God and love people. Abby Easley loves God and loves people alongside us and we love her for that.

 (From left to right) Abby, Janae, Taylor, Abby, and Hope serve a St. Patrick's Day treat to our spring break campers.

(From left to right) Abby, Janae, Taylor, Abby, and Hope serve a St. Patrick's Day treat to our spring break campers.