Belarus (SGA) — Sometimes people ask how a summer camp trip can change anything in a child’s life. Slavic Gospel Association just posted one of their results from a summer camp experience in Belarus. What follows are the thoughts from an SGA-sponsored missionary pastor, Dmitri, couched in context by an SGA staff member:
Recently, he sent in a wonderful report about a summer camp that his church held for children with physical challenges and other special needs–a camp SGA partners helped make possible.
In his report, Dmitri shared a letter written by a girl named Alina, who has a heartbreaking story. But her life was changed by the Lord through summer camp, and the Lord used her to share His love with the other children at the camp:
My mother was deprived of her parental rights because she was an alcoholic and could not take care of me. I did not have a father at home. Then my mother died, so I was taken from home and raised in an orphanage. When I was seven, I was adopted out, and my foster mother was a Christian. I began to attend church, and the next year I sincerely repented. Now I’m 15 years old.
My friend Yana invited me to the camp. Her brother has Down’s Syndrome. Since last year’s camp, her family has been attending the church. For me, this special time was like a ray of daylight. Of course, I met many people and I made a lot of friends. But more important for me was to be able to share with these special kids. My attitude to people is changing, with mercy, compassion, and other qualities growing in me. Such camps are necessary not only for disabled children, but also for the healthy ones. We have learned to love and accept one another!
Dmitri says that this camp ministered the love of Christ beyond the children to also touch their families and caregivers, and for that, he is thankful to God.
Our camp made the greatest impression. It was an unforgettable time with people who face a lot of anxiety and troubles. They are largely isolated at their homes with their ill and disabled children, without any fellowship or any hope. We send special thanks to SGA partners and staff for your ongoing support and assistance in organizing our Christian children’s camps. Thank you for the colorful Christian literature, material resources, and prayer support. The Word of God is living, and it is already bringing His blessing on those who heard!