At the beginning of July, we traveled back to Costa Rica to lead a short-term mission team. The team consisted of 10 youth and 2 adult leaders. For five of the eight days they experienced a traditional Costa Rican youth camp. The other days they experienced traditional Baptist church services, explored Costa Rican culture, ecology, countryside and food.
Twenty-six Costa Rican youth joined them at Campamento Bautista Ochomogo. All activities were in Spanish & English. Most of the youth only knew one of the languages but a few were fairly fluent in which ever was their second language. It was neat to see them communicate with each other despite the language barrier and they did successfully communicate too.
The youth were stretched more than they’d ever been in their lives. They dove into scripture in a bilingual setting, worked on service projects together, participated in team building activities, worshiped God bilingually, and explored and experienced Costa Rican culture and beauty together.
Friendships were built.
Faith was deepened.
God spoke to them and worked and moved in their hearts during the week. Here are a few of their testimonials:
“God is bigger than just my local church world.”
“Worshiping God in both Spanish and English was moving.”
“Sharing and experiencing each other’s culture helped us appreciate each other’s differences.”
“Everyone was included and willingly participated.”
The leadership and programing was meticulously put together by a group of very talented youth leaders from a number of the Baptist churches of the Baptist Federation. Every day, we were amazed and saw God at work among them. Each group was flexible and willing to adjust if necessary. The US team leaders were well prepared for almost every possible possibility (which made our job as the host missionaries much easier), they worked alongside the CR leaders and with the youth, participated in the games as well as in the worship and service projects. They even participated in the creek challenge, which always ends with everyone covered from head to toe in mud (Costa Rican camp tradition). A must do experience while at camp!
During evening worship, each adult leader was tasked with giving the evening devotion on a specific theme. It was God orchestrated that what each person shared built on what the previous person had spoken on. It couldn’t have been planned any better. At the close of the week, the Costa Rican Youth Pastor, Roberto, gave a big compliment to the US leadership. Roberto told us that this was the first time that the speakers he had asked to speak to a specific theme actually spoke on the requested theme. He was so thankful and told us that that had made his week as the leader so much easier and that the teachings were enriched by this. Praise God!
We thank you for your continued prayer and financial support. Remember us in your Giving Tuesday and Year End Giving. As always, you can give safely and securely at any time here.
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Read our previous journal.