Day 8: Camp day 3

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The weather this week has been amazing, sunny with cloudy periods. When the kids were out for reflection time, the clouds moved in to provide coverage. The breeze by the mountain side was also a relief when it does get hot. God has been good in giving us some of the best Ukraine weather we've ever experienced!!

 Parachute games for day 3 games station!

Parachute games for day 3 games station!

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In the afternoon we had a power outage and ran a secondary power source with their generators. We were afraid we won't have power to pump the water to the field as it is also water games day today! We got the water running and the kids had a great time in the sun! 

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 A few years back we sang the song "Unstoppable" for the G-Force VBS camp here in Ukraine. During the evening, we decided to sing it again with the youths who were in that camp. This is a picture right before Pastor Adriel pulled something (his back/shoulder) in the middle of the song as it is a very physically demanding song. The youth had great memories of that camp and that song. 

A few years back we sang the song "Unstoppable" for the G-Force VBS camp here in Ukraine. During the evening, we decided to sing it again with the youths who were in that camp. This is a picture right before Pastor Adriel pulled something (his back/shoulder) in the middle of the song as it is a very physically demanding song. The youth had great memories of that camp and that song. 

 It is also Olya's birthday today! Picture perfect timing by Adriel.

It is also Olya's birthday today! Picture perfect timing by Adriel.

Day 7: Camp day 2

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Our second day theme is on acceptance, this is an important topic in a country where there is a divide between the Ukrainian and the Roma people. Mark and Oleg did a great job as the Captain Mark and Romper (puppet)!

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 Craft station...

Craft station...

 Science station...

Science station...

 Games station...

Games station...

 Life size foosball! 

Life size foosball! 

 Small group reflection time. The camp site provides acres of space for groups to reflect and discuss what they learned.

Small group reflection time. The camp site provides acres of space for groups to reflect and discuss what they learned.

A few prayer requests:

  1. Pray for our health as we continue to move through the rest of the camp days. 
  2. Prayer and thanksgiving for the weather. We have clouds and sunny breaks with breeze in the camp site. It's the nicest I've experienced here!
  3. Pray for our leaders as they continue to work through and develop the logistic and stories of each day. 

Day 6: Camp day 1

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On our first day of camp we met many new children from poor villages as well as the ones from HOM. This year our theme is Rolling River Rampage and throughout the week we find "adventure, acceptance, joy, rest, and peace" on the river. 

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In each station, the HOM youths lead the story time, craft, games, science, and small groups. It is a huge part of our goal to empower and equipped youths to live and lead for Christ. 

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But as we develop the current generation of youth leaders, we are reminded that there is another generation growing up after them. The continuing work of discipleship that is the building of relationships and reflecting the relentless love of Christ to the others is not over until Jesus comes again. We are reminded that our mission is not just working on a project or making people more useful or functional, but we are to build relationships as that is God's mission to us: His desire to relate to us, to be our personal friend, king, and saviour, and adopt us as His children.

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 We celebrated many birthdays in this two weeks. 

We celebrated many birthdays in this two weeks. 

 Ended the evening with some games and volleyball. 

Ended the evening with some games and volleyball. 

Day 5: Sunday

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This is our first Sunday to church and everyone got ready at 9:30AM. As we waited for the bus, a few of the boys picked flowers for their teacher and Crystal also got a bunch too. These boys will melt your heart! Dan on the other hand, was the centre of attention as the kids loved all the games he played! 

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After church we came back to the centre for lunch. We were blessed to be able to meet a team of ministers from the conflict zone in Eastern Ukraine. Their stories and experiences were convicting and challenging to our western ears as their problems are more than mere numbers and strategies, they are life and death. 

 Pastor Adriel found his other brother who is also a pastor (with a Korean root) from Eastern Ukraine! 

Pastor Adriel found his other brother who is also a pastor (with a Korean root) from Eastern Ukraine! 

 The original Cabbage roll for lunch. There are no comparisons in Canada.

The original Cabbage roll for lunch. There are no comparisons in Canada.

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Sunday evening we moved all our materials and luggage to the camp site. The teen leaders and us will be staying here for the rest of the second week. We spend the time decorating the hall and prepping for the week. For much of the camp, we are letting the leaders run with it, empowering them to make their own choices and praying that they themselves will experience God in their adventure with the kids. 

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Day 4: Teens sessions continue and the Asian Canadian dinner

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The day continued with the teen's workshop. We spend much of the time figuring out each station as well as purchasing last minute supplies and ingredients for the evening's Canadian Asian dinner.  

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We started our cooking at around 4PM, and I think they thought we might not make it! In previous years, we had begun to prep the night before!!! Our Canadian Asian dinner night is meant to help give the cooks an evening off as we "attempt" to cook a decent Asian meal for our Ukrainian family to try! This year we had baked salt and pepper chicken, miso soup, and lettuce wrap! Our dessert was made by one of the teachers in the centre!

 Our miso soups.

Our miso soups.

 Milka's artisan cakes!

Milka's artisan cakes!

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At the end of the dinner, children presented to the staff of the centre wreaths filled with shrinky-dinks filled with thanksgiving messages that they made while the staffs was on their date night. You can sense their heart-felt thanks in each of their speeches. 

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After the dinner, there were volleyball matches, football games, and much love shared amount everyone. Their lives truly examplifed a community living out their faith and their joy together.

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