The Pathfinder organization is a worldwide ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church that caters to the complete development of young people ages 10-16. Attending camps and camporees is an integral part of the experience of any pathfinder, whether it is at the church, conference, union, or division level.
Ordinarily, local churches and local conferences or missions conduct pathfinder camps in their specific areas at least once a year. However, at the union, division, or international level pathfinder camporees are held at least once every five years. Pathfinder camporees provide young pathfinders with the opportunity to:
On April 4, 2015, approximately 200 pathfinders from the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands, converged at the Bahamas Youth Camp in Nassau, Bahamas to participate in the first Atlantic Caribbean Union Pathfinder Camporee.
The theme for camporee:
In August 2014, during the Forever Faithful International Pathfinder Camporee in Osh Kosh, Wisconsin, USA, Pastor Andrew Burrows, youth director, of the Atlantic Caribbean Union challenged the pathfinders to recommend a theme for our very own pathfinder camporee. Ideas were tossed up, and themes were suggested based on popular Biblical characters. “Let’s do the story of Jonah and the whale!” suggested an enthusiastic pathfinder, from the Cayman Islands Conference. We can call it the “Whale Way”. At the pathfinder camporee planning committee, the concept of the story of Jonah and the whale was presented. After much discussion and fine-tuning, it was agreed that the theme would be YOU-Turn with a pun on the vehicular code, “U”. There is an intentional focus on you as a person. “You” represents anyone, any pathfinder, any youth, or any adult. It refers to anyone like Jonah who finds himself/herself running away from God. Yes, you can make a U-TURN toward God.
The Camporee Logo
The logo depicts a large fish, with human-like teeth coming up out of the sea, against the background of the pathfinder logo with the camporee theme. It is enclosed by a border, which displays, the date, and the place of the event. Interestingly, two pathfinders, and not Jonah, are seen inside the mouth of the large fish. One, a young girl, is curious to explore what is inside the fish. The other, a young male, has determined that life inside the fish is not a place to be and makes a fast YOU-turn out of the fish’s mouth.
Daily Camping Experience
Each day, before sunrise, pathfinders greet the day by having personal and corporate devotions in their conferences followed by line call. The daily agenda is filled with activities such as, sports and exhibition challenge, craft and honor, developmental seminars, and spiritual nuggets. One of the highlights of the camporee is the nightly drama, where the pathfinders act out the experience of Jonah. This is followed by an appeal as the pathfinders are challenged to remain focused on their relationship with Christ.
A crowning feature of the camporee will be a pathfinder investiture service and a baptismal service on Sabbath, April 11. This will be followed by a community project near the campgrounds where the pathfinders will distribute thousands of copies of the book, Health and Hope. On Saturday night, April 11, 2015, the curtains will come down on Camporee 2105, You-Turn, with the closing ceremonies. -Pastor Andrew Burrows, Youth Director; ATCU
Communication Department, ATCU
On January 16, 2014, the Inter-American Division (IAD) will begin phase 2 of “One Year in Mission” (OYIM), an outreach program of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists that began in October 2011. According to the youth department of the IAD, the vision for OYIM is "to encourage young people to get involved in the mission of the church."
The first phase of the project involved each of the 13 world divisions of the Adventist Church sending one youth representative to participate in the evangelistic endeavor “Mission to the Cities” held in New York City earlier this year. The experience served as a model for the subsequent phases that will take place in each division, union, and conference/mission over the next two years.
In OYIM, Phase 2, a team made up of young adults from each of the 22 unions that comprise the IAD will be trained in three areas: evangelism, community service, and small groups. The goal is to create a working model that can be replicated in their respective unions and local fields during 2014 and 2015 respectively. Mexico City has been identified by the IAD as the host city for this second phase of the project.
During its recent year-end meetings, the executive committee of ATCU selected Paris Williams of the North Bahamas Conference to represent the union in Mexico City.
Paris Williams is a member of the Blessed Hope Seventh-day Adventist Church in Freeport, Grand Bahama, the Bahamas and currently serves as a Sabbath School secretary, assistant church clerk, and junior deaconess. She is actively involved in the youth department, holding the position of secretary of the Adventist Youth Ministry. Ms. Williams was the recipient of the Most Distinguished Pathfinder Award for the Blessed Hope Seventh-day Adventist Church in 2011 and was the second place winner of the North Bahamas Conference of Seventh-day Adventist youth speech competition in 2012.
Pastor Andrew E. Burrows, youth director of ATCU, notes that upon the completion of the OYIM project, Paris will be instrumental in helping to formulate an evangelistic plan for the youth department of ATCU based on the experience gained in Mexico and the model of OYIM.
Communication Department, ATCU
On Wednesday, June 26, 2013, seventeen youth and youth leaders from the three countries within the Atlantic Caribbean Union (ATCU) began their journey to South Africa to participate in the much anticipated 3rd World Congress on Youth and Community Service (WCYCS). After an average of twenty-one hours of flying time, the delegates from the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands arrived in Cape Town, South Africa to begin the first phase of the WCYCS, which was a week of community service projects.
Upon arrival, they were received with open arms by the leaders and members of the churches from the various districts in the community. The warmth and hospitality of the host families quickly made up for cold weather that would be experienced throughout the trip.
The group from ATCU participated in two community projects. The first was the Vacation Bible School which was held at the Seventh-day Adventist church in the Khayalethu district. The second project involved the fencing, clearing of rubble and debris, and the painting of the children’s Sabbath school rooms at the Good Hope Seventh-day Adventist High School and the adjourning Kuils River Seventh-day Adventist Church. According to the statistics on the Impact South Africa website found at www.impactgcyouth.org , there were more than 65 community projects in both Pretoria and Cape Town, South Africa.
After an eventful week of community projects, the delegates flew to Johannesburg/ Pretoria to participate in the youth congress. Thus, on Monday evening, July 8, after an impressive and inspirational opening ceremony, Gilbert Cangy, youth ministries director for the Adventist world church, declared the congress officially opened. Using the theme “Jesus is in the City,” Gangy challenged each delegate to show Jesus to the people in South Africa and also in the places where they lived.
The sessions were held at the St. George’s Hotel outside the city of Pretoria. There were 3,200 persons from 97 countries registered as official delegates. Each day began with devotions and plenary sessions. Activities continued in the afternoon with workshops and concluded with Spirit-filled and thought-provoking evening sessions. These were interspersed with creative reports from the 13 divisions of the world church
The featured speaker was David Asscherick, co-founder of ARISE, a missionary training center located in Sonora, California, U.S.A., During his nightly presentations, Asscherick , a former punk rocker, now gospel minister, expounded on what he termed several non-negotiable truths, one of which is that “God is Love.”
There were numerous other speakers including Elder Ted Wilson, president of the Adventist world church, and Dr. Ben Carson, noted neurosurgeon. Elder Ted Wilson challenged the youth of the Seventh-day Adventist church to be involved in the mission of the church. Dr. Ben Carson inspired the young people as he recounted many experiences as a neurosurgeon.
On Sabbath morning, July 13, the 3,200 delegates were bused to the Lucas “Masterpieces” Moripe stadium located in Atteridgeville, a suburb in Pretoria, where they were joined by church members from around Pretoria for Sabbath worship. Pastor Ted Wilson delivered the message to the worshippers and Dr. Carson again shared his testimony.
In the afternoon, the delegates, wearing their blue t-shirts with the theme “Jesus in the City” imprinted on the back, scattered throughout the surrounding communities of Pretoria and distributed approximately 20,000 copies of the “Great Hope.” They also prayed for and offered encouraging words to the residents.
On Saturday night, during the closing ceremony, the attendees waited with bated breath as the announcement was made that the next youth congress will be held in 2018 on the continent of Europe. The exact date and country will be announced later. Thereafter, the thousands of delegates from around the world, including the delegates from ATCU, left South Africa, eager and charged to take the message of “Jesus in the City” back to their churches , schools, work places, and their countries.
Contributions by Jewel Ewing, youth delegate from the Turks and Caicos Islands Mission, and Ivor Harry, youth ministries director of the Cayman Islands Conference.
Pastor Andrew Burrows, ACUM’s Youth Director, will be in attendance.
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