Sunday, 12 August 2012

Dance Camp Reflections

Two years ago, we hosted a young woman named Kendal from Los Angeles for 2 months as an intern. She was in her last year at Fuller Seminary and needed a field placement and somehow we got connected and she came.

Little did we know what God was up to in her life or ours.

In her words two years ago ... 'I came feeling like I was entitled to everything and now I feel like I'm entrusted with everything.'

Serge and I were humbled to be part of this incredible transformation. I remember her telling me that she had never had dust on her shoes... and by the end, she was dancing in barefoot in the dirt.

She is an incredibly gifted praise dancer. We knew that God would use her here with our  ministry to street kids. Since we started an annual day camp for street kids and former street kids in 2006, we have included arts - music, drama, cultural dance, painting, drawing - depending on the talent of those serving with us at the time. Those living on the street do not have any opportunity to discover any of these skills or gifts which God may have created in them.

Kendal returned last year with a team
She returned this year with a team.
She plans to come back each year until God tells her otherwise.

This years team
BR - Kendal, Andre, Nikita, Tanae
FR - Delilah, Monica, Daniel
Just the other day she reminded me of a long conversation we had in the bank parking lot during her first year here. She was trying to find purpose and meaning with all she was experiencing. I said to her, ' I think that all this is so that you can go home and mobilize your church into mission (She was attending a mega church and she was their first missionary) and bring them back here on short-term teams.'

Well that is what has happened... and each and every one that has been brought on her teams has been significantly impacted. It's so incredible to see, when team members who think they are coming to give, end up receiving more than they could imagine.

Serge translating for Kendal as she
introduces the 20 minute performance
including song and dance
Today was the presentation of the last two weeks of camp. We partnered with Harvest Restoration Church - a long time friend of Serge's ministering in a poorer part of Kigali. My heart is full of thanksgiving for all that has happened in the two weeks. I saw each team member engaged with the camp participants. I saw the amazing fruit of their labours.

- 90+ kids between the ages of 5 and 25 showed up each day for camp from 9am to 3pm
- The church has been wanted a drama / dance team for the last years and has had no one to train them - a group of 17 from the church were trained for two weeks.
- Each participant got to chose which dance they wanted to learn or participate in the chorale. (Amazing to see some of our former street kids singing in harmony!)
- We spent an hour each day in worship and teaching around 'We are because He (God) is.' 
- During the camp, a number of kids asked very significant questions about faith. 
- The Pastor of the church was significantly moved as to how the kids from his church, over half the camp participants, were able to learn, grow in their faith and perform during the Sunday Service. Those that Kendal has trained here, will continue to work with the growing drama ministry in his church.

Sure looking forward to next years camp and all that it will bring!

Some of the 90+ kids lined up outside for their last
song and dance to 'God is Enough!'
PS. Isabella was thrilled to be involved this year

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