Saturday, May 2, 2009

a great time together

Our weekend activities started off on thursday at 1 pm when some of us began fasting so that we might gain an understanding of what it's like to go hungry. Then we broke our fast together on Friday night at 7pm with many thanks to Melissa, Jody, Dianna, Sue, Annie, and others who put together a wonderful breakfast for us. Then we celebrated Daniel's birthday with a delicious cake from Mrs. Coulbourne. We then retired to the block house for an awesome preview from "Adventures in losing ourselves" artists Daniel and Greg. After sharing with us some of the songs they've been writing they led us in a time of worship where even Presbyterians could lift their hands up. Thanks Greg and Daniel.

Then the majority of the night was taken up by playing TRIBE, a series of games and interactives that helped us realize the plight of hungry children in the Amazon region of South America. We "crossed the Amazon" to experience what some children have to undergo to get to school, we unscrambled words to discover exactly what they're teaching parents in clinics to help prevent children dying. We played "Peligro" to empathize with the dangers these children face on a daily basis. We played "food grab" to emulate what it might be like to try to get food everyday when you don't know where you're getting it from. We played futbol, crab futbol that is, to experience one of the only joys many of these kids in poverty know. We read a story and actually took a reading comprehension test in order to learn more about the plight of real kids in South American desert highlands. Then we played a version of hide and seek where a member from each tribe was elected to represent the "shining path rebels." In South America there are millions of internally displaced refugees due to violence. As we were doing all these things at each step of the way we were looking at scripture to see how Jesus empathized with us, to see how Jesus provide hope for us, to see how Jesus provides daily for us, and to see how Christ's humility moves us toward humility.

Then we retired to our respective sleeping berths for the night and woke up early the next morning to a warm breakfast (thanks Becky and Melissa,) before setting out on two more adventures. The girls went with Ms. Karin down to the Christian Community Center in Baltimore to play with and minister to some inner city girls. Thank you Tom Homans for providing this opportunity.

The guys meanwhile joined up with youth and men from Bowie, Annapolis, Hanover, Frederick, Laurel, Westminster, and College Park to play airsoft. We did recon, take the high ground, valley run, Stage Coach, Ambassador evacuation (and Terrorist detonation,) and protect the captain. Thanks to Buck for helping me come up with the scenarios and to Bob, Tom, Doug, and all our other officials for helping us have a safe set of games. Guys, we were trying to teach you some realities about warfare, not least of which was doing it in the rain. Thanks for being good sports.

And I was having too much fun to take any pictures. But I thought I'd let you know what happened because when you ask your youth they might be too tired to tell you what actually happened.