An English-language youth camp was held from 9 – 12 July near Pretoria, on the north side of the Magaliesberg mountains.
Fifteen youth from the Fairlands, Our Saviour, ELC Pretoria, Panbult, and Newcastle congregations participated, accompanied and led by Pastors Michael Ahlers and Jacob Corzine.
The topic for the camp was “God in the World, the Christian in Society.” On the first evening and every morning, we had presentations or group discussions around this theme. The idea that God uses men as His instruments to rule among us with different goals and intentions was especially important: In society, God intends peace and justice; in the church, He works the forgiveness of sins. Our discussions focused on this, and the notion that no Christian lives just in the church, but always also in the world. We spoke together about how a Christian can be involved in society, how a Christian can react when seeing or experiencing injustices, and what it means for the church that people from outside the church always see Christians and the Church of Jesus Christ and often then make judgments about us.
Devotions were held in the mornings and evenings, and on the last evening we had a Divine Service with Holy Communion. The afternoons were free time, so that everyone could decide how to spend them. Still, almost the entire group went hiking on the mountain on Wednesday afternoon. And since a smartphone got left on the mountain in the midst of taking some selfies, some of the group went hiking again on Thursday. They found the phone. There was also volleyball and football, and board games in the evenings (if we weren’t busy with a braai or potjie). Everyone had to work some too: Kitchen teams prepared our meals and cleaned up afterwards. We’re grateful to Mrs Isolde Paul of St Paul’s Pretoria, for all of the planning of the wonderful meals.
The response of the youth at the end of the camp was very positive. They’d come again if we hold another English-language youth camp next year.
Pastor Jacob Corzine, Pretoria