Posted on July 13th, 2008
This year, nine of our youth and two from Tar Wallet Baptist Church left for Wingate University in North Carolina for PASSways youth camp. It was an awesome experience! This year’s theme was Countdown. The question is what exactly were we counting down? Well several things. First of all we counted down the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
There are eight Millennium Development Goals:
- To end hunger and extreme poverty
- Achieve universal primary education
- Promote gender equality and empower women
- Reduce child mortality
- Improve maternal health
- Combat HIV/AIDS , Malaria, and other diseases
- Ensure environmental sustainability
- Develop a global partnership for development
We also learned that we are counting down to the completion of these goals by 2015. In order to make this happen we as Christians must do something. Our motivation spurs from the fact that these goals reflect the teachings of Jesus and the Kingdom of God. Our inspiration for the week was that God’s Kingdom has come , we must change our lives now!
During PASSways our youth learned about how these goals have a Biblical basis in their daily Bible study groups. They also had the opportunity to participate in many different faith experiences. Some had the opportunity to work at a day camp with children. Others did contruction work at a halfway house. Still others participated in what PASSways calls “choices”. Faith and the Arts, chosen by two of our youth explored how God gifts us with many different artistic talents and how those talents can be used to worship Him. Common Threads taught one of our youth how people of all racial, cultural, and even various religious backgrounds have something in common. Skin Deep helped one young lady to discover the beauty God sees in us beyond our surface appearance.
PASSways is an experience of a lifetime! If you missed the trip this year we hope you will join us next year! Registration will begin in October so keep your eyes on the calendar!
Posted on July 9th, 2008
This year 6 students and 4 adults went to Passport Kids Camp at Eagle Eyrie Conference center in Lynchburg Virginia. Attending the camp from Farmville Baptist were:Thea Cheuk, Erin Copeland, Christopher Landrum, Breanna Smalley and a guest from Meherrin Baptist Church Amanda Elsaesser. Amanda Johnston, Beth Cheuk, Kathryn Copeland, Janet Moore, and David Landrum all helped to chaperone at least a portion of the week.
The theme for camp this summer was Trading Spaces. The campers learned all about our international neighbors right here in America. During their mission time they went through the experience “Portal to the United States” they got to see what it is like for people imigrating to America. At the night market on the second night of camp the children were able to explore an international neighborhood. This experience not only taught the children about various different cultures such as Bali and South Africa, but it also showed them that international people live all around us.
Learning, however, was not the only thing going on at camp. The students had a blast at the huge “Rec-fest” party olympic games. They participated in the world’s longest slip and slide, crab soccer, mega volleyball, and other incredible events. In fact team recreation was a daily activity for every camper, as well as swimming, Bible study, missions, and the campers choice activity each day.
Each evening was topped off with a thought provoking worship service that fit into the theme and the challenge for the day. Using the worship reflections and night devotionals the students were given opportunities to review what they had learned that day within their church group. The students also spent time with God individually each day during their morning devotions. Passport was an awesome experience for the students to have fun, get to know other Christian students, learn about internationals within our own country and how to get involved in missions, but most of all they were given a wonderful opportunity to grow spiritually.
Posted on July 2nd, 2008
In April, we posted an article about three Baptist Collegiate Ministry students attending Farmville Baptist who were preparing to go on summer mission. Last week, we received the following letter from Emily Caviness.
Dear friends and family,
I have returned safely back home to Virginia! Thank you all for your prayers and financial support. From when I first decided to go to Macau, I didn’t know how I would pay for the whole trip, but God took care of every worry or possible trouble. Our team was able to teach English to 60 people while we were there, and we were able to hand out to restaurant workers 1,600 gifts inviting them to Macau Baptist Church. Mainly, though, God used us to show his love simply by creating friendships with the people. In Chinese, the phrase for “boring” literally translates in English to “talking about Jesus,” so it was a blessing to be able to show the people God’s light in a fun and personal way. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted on July 2nd, 2008
As we approach July 4th, the idea of freedom and independence has been on my mind. We as a country and as individuals value freedom, but many in our day and age find Christianity confining and constraining, an enemy to personal freedom. This view is in part due to our modern, Western understanding of freedom as being able to “think anything we want to think, and do anything that we want to do,” without relying on an outside authority or power. So how can one with such a view come to accept Christianity and Jesus Christ?
A book that I read during my vacation was very helpful in suggesting an answer. The book is called The Reason for God, written by Dr. Timothy Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. While there is much to comment on and commend in the book, one of the things that I want to share in this column is Keller’s take on true freedom. Read the rest of this entry »