Outreach in Åhus
Over travel weekend, we (Karalie, Katrina, Luisa, Lisa and David) had the amazing opportunity to assist with leading a confirmation camp for youth in Åhus, on the Baltic sea in southeastern Sweden. After the three-hour shuttle and bus ride down, we arrived at our destination. Upon arrival, we were asked to lead in worship that night. Although we weren’t prepared for that, our team had all the abilities required. This was a real blessing, and throughout the camp we realized how perfectly God had prepared the trip for us and put together our team.
Throughout the weekend we periodically led worship. Introducing English songs to the youth was a challenge at first, but by the end of the weekend, all of them had learned the songs and some were found singing around the dinner tables. Friday morning was our opportunity to lead the morning devotional. Lisa spoke on the parable of the four soils, which really opened up the theme for that weekend, “Which soil will you choose to be?”
That day we got to know the youth a little better as we interacted with them a little bit more outside of the service. We got to choose between seeing the beautiful sights of the town of Åhus or hit the beach for some sunshine, swimming and ultimate Frisbee. It was a great time to develop some bonds with the youth, and learn more about the lives they lead, and just hang out.
Our role at the camp also had us lead some group activities. That evening we took half of the youth outside to get them active, and then half inside to focus on more team building exercises. Both were a hit. We also participated in the activities organized by the other leaders. In one of these activities the youth were challenged to write down a burden that they had been dealing with. We then went on a night walk down to the beach where they had a fire burning to cast their burdens into.
Saturday was our opportunity to be involved in some of the teaching. Friday had the youth sitting through classes and learning different aspects of what we learn from Jesus through what He said and did. There were four more classes for them, and we split up to lead two, one being on the topic of prayer and the other on how to read the Bible. At times, overcoming the language barrier was difficult, but we were able to have our classes translated by a leader as well, which helped keep the youth engaged. There were some really good questions and discussions, and it was good to see the youth wrestle with the subjects.
Sunday morning was perhaps the climax of our part of the camp. Luisa and David shared their testimonies to encourage the youth to take steps of faith. Before we left on Sunday we challenged them not to leave without taking something personal away – without being changed by God.
Åhus truly was an amazing time for all of us, although we came home tired and exhausted. We pray that the seeds we helped sow will continue to grow and develop as the Lord sees fit.