We have started our second full day at Penzion Koniklec and every element of camp is in full swing. We have 74 people at Camp with 20 Americans, 18 Czech Christians from Arka Church in Pardubice and 36 non-Christians who are friends of the Czechs. The opportunity this week is really significant as we have many new people at camp as well as a number of people we have know from previous camps who are moving closer to Christ.
Our schedule for the each day includes a short devotion & prayer meeting for Christians (and any one interested) at 7:30 in the morning. This is followed by the Morning “Wake Up Call” (the Czech word for this is “Budicek”. It is pronounced and yelled throughout the hallways as “Booty Check”). Breakfast is followed by a short thought provoking video the students write about for the first fifteen minutes of their English Classes. English Class is from 9:15 – 12:00. Lunch (always with soup – “Polivka”), is followed by free time (naps?) and then sports and games from 3:00-5:00. Dinner is in two shifts from 5:30-6:45. The day is finished off with the Christian Evening Program (Camp Dance – Jordan Kraynik and Caroline Osborn blow me away leading the dance, Crazy Songs, Ice Breaker Game, Testimonies from Czechs, Worship and the Evening Message and Discussion Groups) from 7:00-10:00. Lights go out at Midnight. The theme for Camp this year is “Collision” and the idea is the collision of what you may have thought Christ and Christianity were all about and the reality of what it is really about. So far we have introduced the idea of collisions and how we have to modify our thinking about things all the time. After introducing the topic the first night, last night I talked about Jesus and the Woman Caught in Adultery in John 8. We incorporated a brief drama of the story with Caroline Osborn as the Woman and Anderson as the Pharisee who brought her before Jesus. They were both Amazing. This led to some great discussions about Christianity being more about forgiveness than judgment.
Two Czech sisters, Petra and Katka, (Blue Petra and her sister for those who were here two years ago) were up until midnight asking some great questions and hopefully getting answers from Shane, Silva and Martin (leaders from the Czech Church). Keep these two girls as well as Viktor and Pavla, Pavel, Jana, Danica, and many others in your prayers. The topic tonight is Jesus’ collision with Zacchaeus in Luke 19. The Message tonight is that Jesus knows all about us and still wants to have a relationship with us. Pray that God will use this message to draw many to him at our camp and throughout the Czech Republic and the eleven other countries where English Camps are taking place with Josiah Venture.
Our team is doing great. English Classes are always hard but we are settling in well. Bob Gerdes had a great birthday yesterday and we celebrated with Ice Cream for the whole Camp (Bob is now greatly loved in the CZR). Today is July 4th and we have spent the morning at breakfast singing patriotic songs and waving flags. We get in all the patriotism we can because the next two days are national holidays in Czech, although no one knows why they are celebrating.
I know this update has been full of information and schedules but I would like to ask you to keep us in your prayers as you think about what we are doing this week. Especially, keep the discussion times after the Evening talks in the center of your prayers for us. This is where the real progress is made for the gospel in the lives of our students here. Pray for the weather to break as well. There are some benefits to being inside because it forces us to spend time together but it would be nice to get outside sometime soon. (For those who are Internet Geeks you can get a report on weather pretty close to us if you look up Liberec, Czech Republic at www.weather.com). Come rain or shine, it is a privilege to be here as a part of this team.
Under the Cross
Ken – for the Team
P.S. Zack Benton learned and sang a song in Czech last night and is now a national heartthrob. I hope we are able to get him home with us. Perhaps this is another matter of prayer.