As nearly a hundred Scottish Mission Pathfinders and staff return from the TED Camporee held in Sopron, Hungary, they are revived, energised and commissioned to serve the Lord with their diverse gifts and talents.
The opening ceremony was concise and gave a brief insight into what to expect. The Pathfinders appeared ready and prepared to make camp work for them. However, it was difficult for them to overcome their feelings of nostalgia for familiar meals, stable weather conditions, and easy access to convenient restroom facilities.
They were challenged both physically and spiritually. Some travelled almost 24 hours just to attend camporee, taking at least two flights, three trains, rail replacement buses, minibuses and taxis.
Weather instability, torrential rains, and scorching sunshine not only tanned their skins, but also flooded their tents and forced some to dig trenches to drain their campsite.
Day 2 at Camp, was very interactive. The Pathfinders had the opportunity to engage in pin exchange activities. Their visit to each other's camp afforded them the opportunity to get to know each other better.
The exchange wasn’t a two-way exchange but sometimes involved 3 or 4 more campers. The second hurdle for this endeavour was to be able to communicate. If the language barriers were too big, you would need to go with an interpreter. It was a very successful activity which ended in ‘joyful tears’- some lost their pins as they returned to their campsite.
Days 3 -5 were full of honours and activities from different Unions. Some were very competitive like rock climbing, mop hockey, escape room, obstacle course, dry skiing and many more. Participants had to work together as a team to complete the activities, and it was a great opportunity to bond with their peers. Everyone had a great time and these activities served as a great way to boost morale and team spirit. One of most popular activities was the Scottish Mission hosted Five-a-Side Football led by Bankole Davies-Browne from Dundee Church.
Included in the honours list was our very own Scottish Mission Bagpipe honour that was taught by Andrew Mason from Glasgow. It was well attended.
ADRA, NEC PF shop and Stanborough Press were on site among other shops. Advent Press and its t-shirt printing was a popular spot. Many young people ordered T-shirts with famous Bible verses such as 'Do not fear', 'Fearfully and wonderfully made', 'Forgiven and saved', etc.
Street Food and Market Day were hugely patronized. These were geared towards raising funds for attending clubs and Ukrainian Pathfinders respectively. In all, over €12 000 were raised from Market Day with the Scottish Mission contributing over €250 from sales that included: a handful of small-sized Pathfinder scarves, Scottish Tablet from Dundee, badges from Crieff and paracord from Glasgow. Well done to the contributing clubs.
Our first and foremost Thanks is rendered to the Almighty God for the messages He shared through Adam, the Speaker. Adam’s sermonettes lasted not more than 12 mins on average and that sustained and engaged the interest of the Pathfinders.
In summary, they left believing that God sees, hears, feels, sets us up for favorable opportunities and longs to spend time with us. Praise God for these timely messages!
Our report would be incomplete without taking time to say Thank You to our Scottish Mission sponsors, Mthoko, Pastor Njay and their family who stayed on site with us through thick and thin. Also, thanks to: our Pathfinder leaders across the Mission for their hard work and dedication, Parents and Elders who sacrificed their time to attend camp to support the leaders (the leaders couldn’t have done it without you), the organisers of TED Camporee, especially for giving some of the young people their first experience of witnessing a live band. The stage was astonishing! And our donors and sponsors for supporting the Pathfinders financially. It was lovely to see Pastor Jimmy Botha make a short but sweet visit to the Camporee.
Last but not least, our adorable Pathfinders.
Wow! Didn’t they do us proud?
The Scottish Mission Scarf was not only the most popular and well-sought-after item/souvenir at camp, but our young people’s positive behaviour, resilience and commitment were commendable. I asked what buoyed their spirits up and they said, "It is because they have been counted in."
Would you like to be counted in?
If you are looking for a spirit-filled summer camp for your child to attend, if you are looking for activities which are mentally, physically challenging and spiritually uplifting during summer 2024, to positively engage your child, then why don’t you start saving towards TED Camporee 2027 in Estonia? Your child will know they are not alone in this heaven-ward journey.
See you in Estonia - Näeme eestis!
Between now and then, for a similar experiences, see your local and Mission level Pathfinder leaders in the Scottish Mission for 2024 Camporee plans.
Also happening next year is the well-advertised International Pathfinder Camporee August 5-11, 2024 in Gillette, WYOMING, USA. For details see: https://www.camporee.org/international-registration/