On July 5th, Betsy Fountain began her new role as Executive Director of Mustard Seed Communities USA. Prior to joining Mustard Seed, Betsy was the Associate Director for Major Giving at Boston College, where she worked for over a decade in fundraising and alumni relations. Learn more about Betsy and her goals for MSC below! (Pictured right, Betsy with Chrisagaye, a resident who lives at Jerusalem!, back when she lived at Sophie’s Place.)
How did you discover Mustard Seed Communities?
I first learned about Mustard Seed as an undergraduate at Boston College. BC’s Lynch School of Education had a spring break mission trip to Mustard Seed, and I signed up to go my sophomore year after declaring a special education minor. That was my first mission trip, but not my last! I have been back a total of nine times now.
Is there a particular mission trip or experience at Mustard Seed that holds a special place in your heart?
My first trip as the staff leader for the Boston College trip was a turning point for me in my relationship with Mustard Seed Communities. I started thinking less about me and my own relationship with MSC, and more about the relationships the students were forming. My focus was not just on providing students with a life-changing week, but in facilitating life-long relationships between them and Mustard Seed Communities. This is the attitude I am bringing into my new role as Executive Director – forming life-long volunteers, advocates, and supporters of MSC!
Betsy with Akeem, from My Father’s House
Is there a resident who stands out in your mind?
There are too many residents to name here! They all stand out in their own special ways. It has been particularly special to watch the way that Chrisagaye has grown up over the years. I met her shortly after she had moved to Mustard Seed, and she had not yet learned sign language. In the past fifteen years I have watched grow up and become more independent, go to school and learn sign language, and help out the caregivers in various ways at Sophie’s Place. I am looking forward to my next trip to Mustard Seed to see how Chrisagaye is settling in to her new home at Jerusalem!
What are you most excited about, as you take on this new role?
I can’t wait to work alongside the incredible Mustard Seed Communities staff abroad! I am especially looking forward to working with Monsignor Gregory and Father Garvin, and supporting their great vision for the future of MSC.
Where do you see Mustard Seed Communities going in the next few years?
We’re looking forward to continuing to bring our mission volunteers back. We have been so grateful to all our volunteers for your prayers and support during the pandemic, and we can’t wait to see you again!
Where did you grow up?
Betsy and the Boston College Mission Team at Our Lady of Lourdes Chapel located at Jerusalem!
What kind of hobbies do you enjoy?
I love reading, going to Broadway shows, and spending time with my family.
Do you have any favorite summertime traditions?
Rowing on the Charles River with my dad.
What are some small things that make your day better?
I have to shout-out the Mustard Seed USA staff for all the things they have done – big and small – to welcome me to the team and bring me up to speed! In the office we have a tradition of sharing our “glimmers” – the small, everyday moments that bring us happiness or calm. It makes my day better to hear the small things that make their days better!
If you could eat only one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Anything Deleen and Becky cook at Sophie’s Place!
To learn even more about Betsy, be sure to watch this interview taken back when Betsy was leading the Boston College Mission Trips to Jamaica.