Over the final days of 2022 and into the early days of 2023, seven youth group kids from Ashfield Presbyterian Church joined many others their age, at the Presbyterian Youth (PY) Summer Camp in Stanwell Tops. This week-long camp is run for high-school students, where they get to meet other Christians from across the state, hear from the Bible and have a lot of fun together.
Following the camp, the students were interviewed during a church service at Ashfield Presbyterian, to relay their thoughts on the camp to their local church. Rosyln Deal, a member of the church and PYNSW SRE Director, interviewed and spoke alongside the students.
In her role as a Mentor on the camp, Roslyn looked after the Leaders and mentored the younger people who were there. She said that everyone who attends camp has a role to play.
The students, whose ages ranged from Year 6 through to university, each answered questions posed to them by Roslyn regarding their favourite aspects and elements of the camp.
Elanor, a university student, said she attended camp as a Leader. “I was a Small Group Leader. My Co-Leader and I just hung out with the kids for a week, played games with them, led studies and were in community with them to teach them about Jesus. I really enjoyed the worship and the New Year’s party was super awesome,” she said.
Overall the students that were interviewed all shared positive experiences and feedback from their time away.
Some of the things they mentioned enjoying were meeting new people, playing games, singing to and worshipping God, as well as water games.
Reflecting on camp
Lucia, a Year 7 student, spoke about what she learnt from the Bible during the week. She shared “The whole week was focused on ‘Who is this Man’ and discovering who Jesus actually is and it opened my eyes to how powerful He actually is and how much power He actually has, I had never really grasped that before.”
Hugo, a Year 9 student encouraged others to attend the next PY Summer Camp saying “It’s a lot of fun and it presents the Bible in a way that youth are able to understand”.
Elanor reflected on her time at camp saying, “It’s super awesome to be in community with like-minded people who want to learn about Jesus and there’s lots of time to reflect on what the Bible means, and you get to do it with a lot of other people your age”.
A role for everyone
Roslyn concluded the interview by speaking about, and encouraging others to join the Lead for Life internship program that trains up leaders. “Once kids finish school then they can be trained to be a Leader, alongside PY Summer Camp,” she said. Roslyn invited the congregation to attend the next PY Summer Camp in one of the many capacities available. “From Year six to age 22 you can go as a Camper, from Year 12 onwards you can go as a Trainee Leader, Leader, or Mentor. If you’d like to come next year, there is a role for you.”
Please pray for all the students who attended PY Summer Camp, that they will continue to reflect on the things they learnt from the Bible and that they will encourage others from their churches and schools to attend the next one too!