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Summer Camps Update

Camp 1 –  at Crossfit Campus

From June 15-17, ServeNow hosted a summer camp for children who live in the Himalayan foothills region in Northern India. We had about 55 children from five different areas in the Himalayan area; most of the children (90%) came from non-Christian backgrounds! It was for all of them the first time to attend a camp like this. During the 3-day camp, ServeNow’s new booklet, God’s Love for You, especially designed for children at VBS and summer camps, was introduced to the children. The children enjoyed the lessons, crafts and activities from this booklet. We also did in-door games, a lot of singing, and Mrs. Gibson taught the main lessons from God’s Love for You. Elijah and his friends from Dehradun led the children in worship and action songs, which they all enjoyed very much. We had divided the big group into five small groups, and the pastors and volunteers, who brought the children from various locations, led and facilitated the small groups in various activities and games.

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Some of the children have been attending Sunday school in their home village, but most of the children came along with their friends, and they had the opportunity to hear about Jesus for the first time! Many of them did commit their lives to Jesus while at camp.

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One pastor brought 14 children from villages 70 km or more higher up in the mountains. This pastor said: Doing ministry is very tough and difficult in the area where we live. Many times I have faced strong opposition from the local people, and sometimes they beat me badly. But we cannot deny the truth. In spite of opposition and persecution, the church is growing; during the past 4 years, we have seen about 30 families (all from a non-Christian background) come to the saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Last year, I brought 10 children from our region to the summer camp, and they all received Christ as their Lord. Those children are now growing strong in the Lord and through them, their parents are now coming to the church as well. Servenow’s summer camp is very effective, and it is a good way for children to hear about Jesus. I appreciate the ministry of ServeNow very much, and I hope and pray that you will continue this powerful ministry in years to come.

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Another pastor and his group of children traveled over 100 km to reach the camp site. He and his wife brought 16 children from their region. He has also suffered a lot for the sake of the Gospel and yet, he has tremendous zeal for the Lord. He conducts children clubs in nearby villages and through that, he tries to reach the families with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He has now about 25 families in his congregation who meet regularly for worship, prayer and Bible study. For all the 16 children that this pastor brought with him, it was the first time to attend a summer camp. He was overjoyed to see the children learning from God’s Word and committing their lives to Christ.

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Rebika is an 8-year-old girl who came along with one pastor. She has attended Sunday school at church for the past 3 months. When she heard about the summer camp, she was very excited and wanted to attend. She was so happy that she could come along with the other children to this camp. She thoroughly enjoyed the songs, stories and activities in the camp. She also gave her heart to Jesus and was happy to receive the God’s Love for You book and a certificate. Sadly, on the last evening of the camp, when she was playing with her friends, she accidentally hit against a tree trunk and fractured her left elbow. She was immediately taken to a nearby medical clinic and given the necessary treatment. She needs our prayers for healing.

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Pooja and her parents came to Christ through one pastor’s ministry. This was her first time at a summer camp. She said: I am glad that I was given the opportunity to come to this camp. I learned a lot from the teaching sessions and activities. This will help me grow in my new faith in Jesus. I am thankful to ServeNow for conducting such a wonderful camp!. I feel so encouraged and blessed; I will go home to my village and share with my non-Christian friends all that I have learned about Jesus.

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We appreciate Mr. Gideon and the entire team who worked hard with all the logistical arrangements, such as contacting and bringing children from various places to the camp. The Crossfit Campus is situated on a mountain, and it is truly a beautiful facility. All of us have really enjoyed being there. Praise the Lord!

Camp 2 – at Kalimpong

We held our second summer camp in Kalimpong, West Bengal. We had 50 children from the Eastern Himalayan foothills attend the camp. Around 40 of these children came from non-Christian families and around 15 of them were orphans, coming from an orphanage. They stayed with us for 3 days, and they all loved having their own bed, good food, fun, and new friends. We actually overheard some of the orphans talking to each other, saying how much fun they were having, how delicious the meals were, and wishing it could be this wonderful in the orphanages!

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The children enjoyed lessons from God’s Love for You, and we did activities like games, crafts, songs, dances and skits. On the last day, many of the non-Christian children also accepted Jesus into their hearts. Though it was a summer camp, we realized that the early monsoon had already started and the villages from where the children had come from were already seeing torrential rains. During these rains, many of the children who do not own umbrellas get drenched and become sick. We decided to give them each their own umbrella, much to the surprise of the children! Three wonderful days and a wonderful gift; the children could not stop smiling.

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Marina, a 6-year-old girl from said: The summer camp was a wonderful experience for me. I made new friends here. The food was tasty and I loved all the fun activities. I also enjoyed the lessons from my new book. I made my own name tag, and we did many other crafts. I had never attended anything like this before, nor have I ever had the chance to go anywhere outside my village. Thank You, ServeNow, for this wonderful experience. I can’t wait for next year’s camp!

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Prashant, a 10-year-old boy, told us: I want to thank ServeNow for the wonderful time me and my friends are having here. Today, we did a lot of crafts, and we also learned about the love of Jesus. Everything here is perfect, and I wish I would not have to leave. The umbrella was a wonderful gift. I didn’t own one, and now I won’t get wet when I walk home from school!

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Thank you to all who donated and prayed for camps this year! There are two more camps that we are gearing up for right now in Ukraine…and we still have half-way to go to meet our goal this year! Would you give a generous donation today towards this urgent need? The camps in Ukraine are for orphans, refugee’s, disabled and disadvantaged children, many from abusive or very difficult backgrounds. These camps are so needed for these kids to simply be kids! Every $250 covers the cost of one child! To Donate, click here: Give Now!

 

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