We praise God for the great opportunity to organize a Christian camp this year again. By His mercy we got fully involved in this ministry trusting the Lord that everything will be under His almighty hand. There are so many young people without purpose and hope in life nowadays. They need love and communication that’s why they try to fulfill their lack of communication and love with perverse things or different useless stuff. The purpose of the PIEI camp was to give the young people a hint to trust Jesus and search love and comfort only near His Word. Only in Him they can find the best friend.
In the evening of July 30th the American team arrived in Chernovtsy along with two Romanian translators, Emma Fogoroshiu and Philip Yuga. The next morning, July 31st the PIEI camp ‘The Candle’ started. There were 110 teens at the camp including 16 leaders, seven people from the American team and four translators. We were 137 people in total.
We started the camp with prayer where we asked God’s presence and His protection over the camp. We split the youth into four classes. The first class was taught by sister Jacqueline, the second – by sister Patricia, the third class learned English with Taylor Allen and the fourth group was taken by sister Gabriela Stef and Krystal Bancroft, a young lady from America who wished to come and help the ministry in Ukraine. Sisters Gabriela’s, Jacqueline’s and Patricia’s groups studied Apologetics, creation and science vs. evolutionism. Mr. Taylor’s class studied English in the morning and in the afternoon they had a bible study from Genesis led by Pavel Petihachny. Every afternoon Mr. Taylor Allan went to Chernovtsy to brother Pastushak’s church and taught English to a group of students formed by 16 people. The students at camp as well the ones in Chernovtsy liked the lessons and learned with great interest. They thanked Mr. Taylor for the great time and for the good knowledge.
Sister Patricia’s class was interested a lot in the subject about creation and the accuracy of the Bible. The students asked her a lot of questions and were amazed to learn interesting and new things for them.
Sister Jackie’s class liked to hear interesting things about the ancient man and how wonderful has God created us. They also were very amazed to see real fossil tissues brought by sister Jackie.
Sister Gabi’s class was very active. They did lots of practical work. They touched the fossil tissues, entered Noah’s ark two by two and the door closed after them, sang songs, Krystal taught them Bible verses in English, after they had a contest who has learnt more English bible verses, and at on the last day of camp they all took a stone on which they wrote their names and a thank you to God. They built an altar from those stones and prayed thanking God for the wonderful time spent ant camp and for the great lessons taught by sister Gabriela.
Besides Bible study the youth spent a great time of relaxation, sports games swimming in the pool and every evening they gathered for praise and worship time. At praise and worship service they praised God through songs, performed thematic skits, and organized different contests. Also every evening a member from the American team had a talk in which they encouraged the youth to trust the Lord and choose him as their Guide and Lord. At the end of the camp the youth became friends with each other, and they did not want to be separated and go home.
Another special thing we had this year, was that more than half of the young people at camp were from unbelieving families and many of these young people were searched by the Word of God that they studied for 5 days, and on the last evening of the camp 60 teens decided to follow the Lord Jesus. Several young people decided to accept Jesus during the lessons, telling their leaders to pray with them, but at the end of the camp they all came in front with the desire that Jesus would change their lives and to follow the Lord everywhere. Please, pray for all the 60 young people who have decided their lives for Christ. We talked with each leader to keep in touch with these young people, in their villages and in their churches.
On Saturday morning after the youth left, the missionaries of PIEI Ukraine with their families, together with the American team made a meeting, where each missionary gave a short report of his work. We have enjoyed much the work that the Lord has helped us to do in the youth camp. All the missionaries have thanked the American team for their sacrifice to Ukraine, traveling such a long way and teaching precious lessons to young people in Ukraine. Only the Lord can reward you with his rich blessings this sacrifice of money, and your labor, and we will pray for you and your families.
Among the Americans who worked in the camp we had sister Peggy Godston, who spent the week with brothers Vasil Preutesa’s and Misha Gortopan’s families. Our daughter Natasha interpreted for her. She visited lots of old people who are alone or are sick comforting them with the Word of God, praying for them, crying with them and laughing with them. She brought them a piece of happiness along with some food and monetary help. She also did a great work. We thank her for her decision to travel such a long journey and helping everybody in need as well the Preutesa’s family where brother Vasil is very sick and needs expensive medication. She is a very kind and special person. May the Lord reward her and her family with His great blessings!
After the missionary meeting on Saturday afternoon, we left with the American team at an orphanage in Chernivtsi, where there are 200 children. This time there were only 150, because 50 children were at sanatoriums during the summer. We have prepared for each child school accesories, notebooks, and pens. We also gave everyone a package of food and sweets that they enjoyed very much. Sister Gabi Stef had a word of encouragement and consolation for these children, and the best word is Jesus Christ, who is father and mother for every orphan. Pray for these children that they can find Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
The next day, on Sunday, we were all in the church in Tarasautsi, where brother Gortopan Mihai is pastor. The church welcomed the guests from the USA. Each member of the group had a short speech at church in which they talked about their time spent in Ukraine. We had a pleasant fellowship with the church of Tarasautsi praising the Lord through songs and listening to the Word of God. In the afternoon we went to pastor Pascari’s village and together we went on a trip to the fortress of Hotin. Then our guests had a beautiful fellowship in the brother Pascari’s family.
On Monday morning we led the US team at the border to Romania, except sister Gabi and Krystal who stayed for 3 days more to work in a day camp for children in the village of Rakitna. On Monday afternoon Sister Gabi taught a beautiful lesson at a ladies meeting with sisters of Rakitna and sisters of other three villages. The lesson was called "The similarities and contrasts between Joseph Jacob’s son and the prodigal son from the parable of Jesus. It was a beautiful lesson. The sisters enjoyed the fellowship where they could to pray for each other and talk to each other encouraging each other with the Word of God. On the second day of camp, in the afternoon, sister Gabi had a meeting at Dinauti with Sunday school leaders. She gave the leaders precious practical advice how to work more efficiently. Tania, a sister from Nesvoia church told us that she liked the message of Sister Gabi a lot and realized that indeed, we need to be more organized so we could train more leaders for the children’s work. Also sister Alina told us that it is a great idea to pray for each child in the class. Being organized and praying for each child we can bring more children to Him.
The time spent with the American PIEI team was a blessed time. We thank God and everybody who helped at the organization of this wonderful camp. We also thank the translators Emma Fogoroshiu, Philip Yuga and Alina Martsinyuk who helped us out of the heart with the interpretation.
A lot of parents thanked us a lot for their children who came home changed. We told them that it is only God’s work in their children’s lives, so they should thank and praise the Lord for them. All the parents and their children thank you for your financial help without which we wouldn’t able to do it. May the Lord bless you and reward your sacrifice. We also thank you for the American team who decided to leave their comfort, sacrificing time and health and came to Ukraine to serve the Lord in conditions not as good as yours. May the Lord bless you and reward you!