What is Restoration Week?
The mission of Lincoln Christian University is to nurture and equip Christians with a Biblical worldview to serve and lead in the church and the world. Restoration Week is an opportunity for students to gain exposure to God’s world, to encounter God at work in His world, and to engage in that work. Each year, Restoration Week provides opportunities for students to grow and expand their classroom learning, in a “week of class on the road.” Teams of LCU students are dispatched to service and ministry sites throughout the world: locally, nationally, and internationally. These trips are usually led by LCU faculty and staff members. Students engage in a variety of activities, including church building, youth ministry, homeless ministry, construction projects, inner-city ministry, and monastic experiences. With at least 25 trips offered every year, each student is able to find a place where they can be blessed and be a blessing. As part of the Service Learning program, Restoration Week counts for part of every student’s Service Learning activities in the spring semester.
The goal of Restoration Week is to provide students with unique service experiences using a “week of class on the road” format to allow students to engage in, encounter fully, and be exposed to God’s work in the world. In this way, Restoration Week is a tangible way for the entire campus to live that mission together as a community of believers.
Is Restoration Week required?
Restoration Week is is required of all degree-seeking sophomore and junior traditional students and optional for freshmen and seniors.
Why is Restoration Week required?
Each year, this program provides opportunities for students to serve, allowing LCU students, faculty, and staff to highlight the importance of our Restoration heritage as we work with churches and other parachurch organizations. Restoration Week also provides opportunities for students to participate in community service projects that restore both culture and creation in the name of Christ. Finally, Restoration Week provides opportunities for students to participate in spiritual and educational retreats to restore the soul and solidify Christ’s call to ministry.
Restoration Week, like Service Learning, is an integral part of an LCU education. Because it is our mission to train servant leaders, we believe that Restoration Week is a critical time for students to encounter God, see where He is at work in the world, and engage in that work. An intensive service experience through Restoration Week shapes students’ hearts and develops their characters by engaging their gifts, passions, and sense of calling while teaching valuable life lessons. Restoration Week enables faculty and students to work side-by-side in taking Christ’s message of love through service to more than 25 worldwide locations every year. We strive to step outside of our own lives and glorify God during this week.
How much does Restoration Week cost?
With more than 25 trips to local, domestic, and international service sites, there are experiences to fit every budget and every heart. Trips begin as low as $150 and are always less than $3,500.
How can I pay for Restoration Week?
With more than 25 trips ranging in cost from $150 to $3,500, there are trips for every interest and every budget. Restoration Week charges go on a student’s school account, so financial aid can help pay for Restoration Week costs. Students are encouraged to raise support to cover their trip costs through fundraising activities and by reaching out to friends, family, and churches. Click here to view a sample letter of support.
Are Restoration Week contributions tax deductible?
No. Donations to cover Restoration Week costs are applied directly to a student’s account. This is not the same as a tax-deductible donation to a not-for-profit organization. This is a donation to a specific individual to cover educational expenses.
How do I choose my trip?
Students are invited to the Restoration Week Fair in October to see what trips are offered the following spring. Once they have decided which four are their top choices, students submit an application listing the trips and the reasons for choosing those trips. Students should approach these trip selections in a prayerful mindset, considering how each trip aligns with their gifts, talents, and budget. For many students, it’s important that parents be involved in the decision-making process.
Once a student submits a Restoration Week application and is accepted to a trip, he or she is obligated for the entire trip cost. Trips are budgeted on an expected number of students per team, and the loss of any student increases cost for his or her teammates. As soon as a student submits an application and is accepted to the trip, the Restoration Week deposit and all other trip costs become non-refundable.
How am I assigned to a Restoration Week project?
Students are invited to the Restoration Week Fair every year in October to learn about the trips offered in the spring. Students submit an application listing their top choices and their reasons for choosing those trips. Once the application is received and logged in the Service Learning Office, each application is sent to the leader of the trip that the student listed as their first choice. That leader will either accept that student on his/her Restoration Week team, or return it to the Service Learning Office. Leaders evaluate their applications based on a variety of factors related to their service site’s needs: gifts and talents, class rank, gender (for lodging purposes), and/or field of study or experience. Applications that are returned to the Service Learning Office are then forwarded to the student’s second choice trip leader, and the process is repeated.
While most students are accepted by their first choice, there are some who are not. It’s important to list choices students will be ready to commit to, because once a leader accepts an application, the students are assigned to that trip and cannot change their mind. Every year there are some students who do not get assigned to any of their first four choices. This is typically due to the popularity of the trips chosen or the quality of the application submitted, but it may be any number of things. When this happens, a student is asked to submit a new application listing new choices from the trips that remain open.
What if I don’t know what my enrollment status will be in the spring?
If you have any uncertainties about your full-time status at LCU in the spring semester, please do not apply for a Restoration Week project. If you return, your Restoration Week options will be substantially limited, as most teams will be full. However, this is better for everyone than to commit to a team and be forced to incur financial and workload obligations that you will be held to, regardless of your enrollment status in the spring.
Can I change my Restoration Week trip?
In submitting your application, you agree to the trip’s commitment policy: “By submitting my application, I indicate that I understand that I am committed to the trip listed above for which my application is accepted, and I am responsible for all trip expenses upon the acceptance of my application by the trip leader, regardless of when the charge shows on my student account or when the money is due. I understand that I will be held to this commitment regardless of any change in my interest or circumstances, including withdrawal/dismissal from LCU or non-registration for the spring semester. Medical excuses may be accepted with a doctor’s note, but I will still be liable for non-refundable charges or for my contribution upon which the team is depending. I am confident that I can raise money to cover my trip contribution.”
The Restoration Week trip cost “per student” is based on a certain number of students in the trip. Reducing the number of students on the team raises the cost per student for each student on the trip, which would be an unfair burden to the team. Additionally, your trip leader chose you for the team based on your gifts, skills, talents, and/or your mix in the class rank or gender for the team dynamic. Your team is counting on your contributions in these areas.
Finally, leaders often receive more applications than they can accept. Other students were turned away from this trip because you were accepted. It’s unfair to them for you to gain a spot on the trip and then walk away from your obligation.
Do I need a passport?
Any student traveling outside the U.S., including destinations in Mexico, Canada, and Puerto Rico, needs a passport. You must apply for your passport as early as possible: no later than the end of fall semester for spring trips. This is to allow ample processing and mailing time to receive your passport. If you are traveling outside the U.S., you will be turned away at the airport if you do not arrive with a passport, and your trip charges will not be refunded.
How do I apply for a passport?
You may find instructions on how to apply for a passport by clicking here.
Do I need immunizations?
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention makes recommendations regarding immunizations for travel outside the U.S. We strongly recommend that students follow the CDC’s recommendations, and we request a doctor’s note from students who elect not to follow those recommendations. You may find recommendations for your travel destination on the CDC website by choosing your destination from the list.
What if my question is not answered here?
If you have Restoration Week questions that are not answered on this page, please submit them in an email to Ashlyn Henke, and your question will be answered as soon as possible.