Ukraine (MNN) — While summer is still several months away, Russian Ministries is already planning for one of their most-effective evangelistic outreaches — summer camp.
Anya is just one example of how summer camp can lead students to Christ. Here's her story:
As Anya surfed the Internet, she stumbled on the church's youth ministry site. She decided to check out the Interactive Café–a special student event, but for some reason she couldn't make it. Eventually, Anya walked into church for the first time in her life.
"Looking back, it was really important for me to be well-received into the group," recalls Anya, now a School Without Walls student in Cherkassy, Ukraine. "And what struck me was the atmosphere of love and acceptance in that church. I was immediately introduced to everyone, and they kept asking me if I would come again and what my plans were for the next week."
The more Anya got to know her new Christian friends, the more she liked them–but she hardly gave any thought to her friendship with Jesus . . . until she went to one of Russian Ministries' evangelistic summer camps.
Anya was especially impressed with Lera, one of the young Next Generation Christians on the camp staff. "All of us wanted to be around her, to talk and listen to her."
One day, Lera shared some of her early fears about following Jesus. Using Scripture as her foundation and drawing on her personal experience, Lera explained to Anya what it meant to follow Jesus.
"When camp was almost over, I had a firm resolution in my heart," Anya says. "Soon after that, at one of the church services, I chose to trust Jesus. It was one of the happiest moments of my life!"
Following Lera's example, Anya has been a summer camp counselor, sharing Jesus' love with a new generation of young women.
Because of a poor economy in Russia, most young people can't afford to pay their own way to camp. Russian Ministries is raising money to help scholarship them, providing opportunity to hear the Gospel clearly represented and the Holy Spirit to begin working on their hearts.