My name is Kona Ho and I am a recent graduate from New Hope Christian College—Class of 2022! As a Creative Arts Worship major, I have been blessed with the opportunity to serve on the worship team as the bass player and band director. During my time at NHCC, one of my favorite experiences was traveling with our team to play bass at various outreaches across the nation. We traveled to churches, high schools, youth groups, camps, and conferences in Oregon, Washington, California, Nevada, and even as far as my hometown, Honolulu, Hawai’i.
These trips provided opportunities to lead in all aspects of ministry, from the planning stages all the way through to the execution of the event. Traveling to these different churches and schools provided unique experiences because every location had different processes in place that we learned to adapt to. Our heart as a team was to bless them and to be a resource to their organization for the time we were there.
Along the way, the trips provided opportunities for us to deepen our friendships with our team and learn how to communicate and problem solve—much-needed skills for all leaders. One of my favorite memories is when we visited Desert Song in Bend, Oregon. Being a local Hawaiian boy who never left the islands prior to coming to NHCC, it was exciting to explore a different part of Oregon. We drove through the mountains, and they were covered in snow! Many of us on the team had never seen snow before. Our leaders knew this and found a place for us to pull over and just experience this part of nature that was so new to us. I’ll never forget this day!
Upon arriving at the church, we were greeted by the pastors and staff. Pastor Chuck Gustafson and his wife, Shalene, organized homestays for our team. Every place we visited greeted us with open arms, and by the time we left, we were family! We got to sit and have meals with them, rest in their homes, share our stories, stand united in prayer over the challenges, and praise God alongside them in the victories. To this day, I cherish these relationships.
The outreach experience is truly more than just bringing a band from out of town to play music; it is a form of serving and ministry in a very special and specific way. We have the opportunity to do life for a moment with people we may have otherwise never met. If we want to make a real impact on the world for Jesus, it’s essential to work together, serving each other and being a resource where needed. We have made many wonderful personal friendships in many different parts of the world, and it is a joy to know that others so far away are praying for us as we get to pray for them!
Written by Kona Ho, Class of 2022