– Challenge, Change, Cohesion! IYF World Camp that Makes Us Happy
From August 12th to 16th, the World Camp, a symbol of happiness, was held at the HILTON HOTEL in Los Angeles LAX Airport, which has the most airlines being operated in the world.
During preparations, Pastor Ahn Jong-ryun of Good News LA Central Church conveyed the heart of Pastor Ock Soo Park that “World Camp is Happiness’ and said everyone taking part in preparing for the camp will gain happy testimonies.
We invited approximately 900 people from the US mainland to Canada First Nations (Indians) and Mexican youths and held four camps at the same time within the World Camp.
The World Camp allows students to participate in a variety of programs including Mind Lectures, Academy, Cultural Performances, 5K Marathon at the famous Santa Monica Beach, Hollywood Tour, Culture Fair, Gracias Music Concert. The Music Camp invites music major students from different cities and teaches music professionally as well as the mind of the Gracias Choir. The Christian Leadership Fellowship is for general church pastors and Christian leaders in the region. Starting new from this year, it was split into the Youth Leadership Symposium in which these youths had come by invitation of these pastors.
At the World Camp, a total of 17 different academies, including yoga, boxing, hip-hop, cooking, vocal lessons, painting and tea manners were held daily so that students can constantly learn, experience and share new things. Especially, this cooking class was an even more meaningful time by inviting Vanessa Soltero H., the chef of HELL’S KITCHEN, a famous cooking survival program of US FOX TV.
The diverse cultural performances that were shown every hour and the music of the world’s best Gracias Choir opened up the hearts of all the students.
In this year’s survey of the youth leadership symposiums (hereafter referred to as “leadership camps”), the participants chose Pastor Ock Soo Park’s mind lecture as the most impressive and best program. Pastor Ock Soo Park said that there are many difficulties and problems in our lives, but there is not only despair but also hope that God has prepared. Then he spoke about General Naaman in 2 Kings chapter 5, who seemed to be in despair due to leprosy, but God had provided hope through his maid servant, Prophet Elijah and his servants. Likewise, people who have God in their hearts are able to have hope before difficulties.
At every mind lecture session, Pastor Ock Soo Park introduced God’s heart in the Bible, said that our lives change when we accept the Words, and shared what true happiness is through testimonies of God working in his life and the gospel of salvation with the students.
On the third day, there was a book signing of Pastor Ock Soo Park, the author of “Who is not me but in me.” Nowadays, crime in Korea is serious as criminal age range is becoming lower, number of mental illnesses caused by cyber game addiction or inability to distinguish the virtual world is increasing, and committing crime without special reason. Pastor Ock Soo Park’s book, “Who is not me but in me,” accurately identifies the power inside us that leads us to sin and it has become a best seller in Korea.
Students who attended the World Camp listened to the lecture of the author and took time to learn about the power that leads our mind through this book. Consequently, the book signing took place successfully.
At this year’s World Camp, 52 First Nations students from Canada attended. Although adapting to a new environment and following a new culture was initially difficult, they gradually got used to the camp and enjoyed every program.
The First Nations (Indians), who were living without contact with outsiders or outside environments in their own area, were invited to the LA World Camp through the IYF First Nations Youth Camp in July.
Although they are the natives before Europeans came to Canada, due to the many more Europeans that entered the land they formed their own tribal villages and have been living in isolation.
They depend on subsidies from the Canadian government to live but without hopes and dreams and simply being complacent. Many adults are illiterate despite education being completely free of cost. They are addicted to drugs, alcohol, tobacco and internet games since a young age. But such students had the precious time to meet a new world and learn God’s mind through the IYF World Camp.
At dawn on the last day, the 5K marathon along the Santa Monica beach presented the students with the chance to run beyond the limits of their physical body and experience the joy of completing without giving up until the end.
After the marathon, the students spent time at the beach of Santa Monica Beach and enjoy the freedom given by nature.
In the afternoon of the last day, they had a chance to tour Los Angeles downtown and Hollywood, the world famous movie industry, by their classes.
At this year’s IYF LA World Camp, the gospel was preached to the students from USA, Canada and Mexico and was a meaningful and unforgettable time for everyone. Like the heart of the servant of God towards the world camp, “World Camp is happiness” and everyone who took part was happy and gained new hope in their hearts.