Eighteen members of the hip hop dance team Refined/Undignified (RU) have taken their show on the road to Mexico.
The team will be working in conjunction with C-Quest, a non-profit organization in Progreso, Mexico that helps vulnerable families through hosting short-term mission trips and community projects focused on home, health, hope and discipleship.
Adrian Webber, Director of RU, knows Gary and Joanne Edwards, the founders of C-Quest from a prior work connection.
“They felt God leading them to start a brand new ministry connecting education – because they’re both teachers – and the Mexican culture – because they’re both passionate about the Mexican people,” Webber said explaining how C-Quest began.
This is RU’s second time to the mission facility in Progreso. The dance team’s presence last year helped introduce C-Quest staff to more churches and people around the area.
“We were actually the fourth short-term mission trip that they’d ever experienced before,” Webber said. “They said last year that we catapulted their ministry forward. We would set up and do a show in a square or somewhere and the people would come up and say, ‘You should come to our church down in this town.’ So that opened quite a few doors.”
Webber is amazed at how quickly those doors opened.
“As soon as you start the music, people just flood to watch,” he said describing RU’s open air shows in public squares. “It’s incredible. We perform in Merida, Progreso and surrounding areas.”
This year’s team is planning to cover twice as much territory.
“Most of the days we’ll be separating (into two teams) and going to different schools and churches and youth groups,” Webber said. “I’m excited to see our teams experience the culture because it is so rich. I just really enjoy the people and everyone’s really friendly.”
The RU director was especially surprised at the freedom they are given to share the gospel.
“We were in public schools and I was preaching the gospel very plainly,” he exclaimed. “Teachers and principals are like, ‘You’re always welcome. The door is open. Please come back.’ “We want to make sure that we are being cautious and not burning bridges as we go, but at the same time they are willing to allow us to talk about our beliefs.”
Another area RU is cautious of is the lime light because of the way Mexican youth can sometimes idolize the team members.
“We don’t sign posters anymore because it was getting out of hand,” Webber admitted. “We want to point to Christ. We want to thank (the audience), take pictures with them, but help them not be pointing to us but Christ.”
Webber has an ultimate goal for this year’s Mexico team.
“I would love to see our team members understand the reality and the privilege of being saved and understand the power of Christ to change souls and lives,” he said. “(There is a) need for all of our teams is to be extremely dependent on prayer for God to soften the hearts and open the eyes and ears of . . .all the audience and all the students so that we can see an eternal impact.”