What a blessing this past weekend (24-26 September) was for the Adventurers, Pathfinders and parents of Plymouth church and their friends, the Exeter Pathfinder Club! Everyone gathered at Chapel Porth Campsite for the first Pathfinder Drill and Drum Bootcamp in memory to reach the far Southwest of the South England Conference (SEC).
Worship took place in a small marquee covered in fairy lights at the top of the field, creating a warm homely atmosphere. The younger children enthusiastically volunteered themselves and others to lead out with the worship songs. With students from Plymouth's Adventist primary school, Fletewood School, 'Side by Side' (their school song) was a must along with some of today's popular worship songs such as '10,000 Reasons'.
The first night Pastor Deyvid Batista led with a message about Peter's reaction when Jesus came to the disciples, walking on the water. He encouraged everyone to keep their eyes on God and be floaters and not sinkers.
We were blessed to have our Adventurer and Pathfinder Area Coordinator, Pam Catchpole, with us. In her devotional she used a tube of toothpaste, squeezed out onto a plate by Annette and Yaa, to illustrate that we can't take back what has been said. Therefore, be kind and considerate and watch what you say.
Despite a cloudy start the sky soon cleared and the sun shone down on the Pathfinders as Drill Instructor, Trevor Harewood, led them through the steps to basic drill and march. Pathfinders young and old from Plymouth and Exeter Clubs were put through their paces and were thoroughly exhausted but inspired by the end of the session. By Sunday everyone was in good time and successfully passed the practical of the basic Drill and March Honour.
SEC Assistant Drum Major, Marcus Antii, expertly guided the Pathfinders through the theory of drum and had them running through routines in no time. Once everyone was in unison the day ended with a competition which went down to the last two ladies standing!
Whilst the Pathfinders were busy with Drill and Drum the Adventurers had their own activities with Gracie Valente (Adventurer Director for Plymouth). She utilised the beautiful nature surroundings of the Cornish campsite to complete the Fitness Fun, Outdoor Explorer and Friend of Nature Adventurer Awards.
Sabbath evening, we were blessed with an amazing sunset over the sea just before we tucked into our evening meal and then gathered in the little marque. Instructor Trevor led the evenings message and reminded everyone that if we are not connected to God we are like a vine severed from its roots.
By the end of the weekend everyone was thoroughly exhausted but left feeling immensely blessed. Friendships were made and strengthened and spirits renewed bringing the church of Plymouth and our friends in Exeter closer together.
The camp could not have gone ahead without those working behind the scenes to make everything happen. Special thanks go to camp organiser – Pastor Deyvid, Adventurer lead – Gracie and camp cooks – Sada, Merari and Lisa. Everyone is immeasurably grateful to Instructors Trevor and Marcus for taking the time to guide and minister to us here in the Southwest. Their support and encouragement is greatly appreciated.