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UC alum brings church group from Virginia to work with Mountain Outreach


WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. — A men’s group from Mount Hermon Baptist Church in Danville, Va. traveled to Williamsburg this week to volunteer with University of the Cumberlands’ building ministry, Mountain Outreach. This is the first of several groups from Mount Hermon that will minister in Whitley County this summer, this first one assisting in building two homes for families in need.

Mount Hermon Pastor Danny Davis and 1978 Cumberland College alum felt a calling three years ago to come back to his hometown of Williamsburg and help in any way he could. After doing some research on needs in Whitley County and learning that it’s one of the top 100 poorest counties in the nation, Davis and his church performed a “blitz” of Whitley County in 2012, sending multiple groups to minister with several different outreach programs. Mountain Outreach was one of those.


Legislator with the Virginia House of Delegates Donald Merricks traveled with a group from his home church, Mount Hermon Baptist in Danville, Va.

This year the group will send three teams: a co-ed team that will come on the weekend of June 16 to work on MO homes, a group of college students who are currently working with a church plant in Canadatown and the men’s group working on homes June 3-6.

“They are a fantastic group to work with, it’s a real good connection for us,” said MO director Marc Hensley of the group. “They really have a heart for the mission.”

The group of nine men, along with MO student volunteers, framed and roofed one house and put the floor on a second. One Mount Hermon church member who came was Donald Merricks, a legislator in the Virginia House of Delegates. Merricks had strong feelings about why the church spends so much time doing hard labor to help others.

“It’s good physical work, with good people, and we’re sharing the love of Jesus,” said Merricks of the job. And although hauling lumber driving nails under a hot sun may not be easy, Merricks suggests it’s an ideal way for Christians to share Christ. “We put a little action to our words.”

Mountain Outreach is a student-led building organization that has been nationally recognized for its work: The Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty selected it as one of ten charities to receive the Samaritan Award; USA Today noted the program in its “Make a Difference Day” competition; President George H. Bush honored Mountain Outreach as his 220th Daily Point of Light; University of the Cumberlands is ranked as one of the top schools by Washington Monthly because of the service its students provide to the community; and the University continues to be placed on the President’s “Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll” in recognition of our students’ commitment to community service. This is the highest federal recognition a school can achieve for dedication to community-based service projects.

Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction, which currently offers four undergraduate degrees in more than 40 major fields of study; 10 pre-professional programs; ten graduate degrees distributed over eight areas, including two doctorates and seven master’s degrees; certifications in education; and online programs. For more information visit