Pathfinders come forward for an appeal at the end of the evening worship service. Photo: Samuel Girven
A variety of activities filled the day, including a 5K run, youth museum, and archery. In addition, Pathfinders had the opportunity to earn several honors, including blacksmithing, drawing, and street art. The day of honors and activities comes on the cusp of World Pathfinder Day, a special initiative of GC Youth Ministries.
The camporee is not only an opportunity for Pathfinders to make new friends and learn but a way to realize that their faith is bigger than the local church. “Some don’t have the same opportunities to relate, but when they come to this place and they see a few thousand Pathfinders coming together, they realize that they’re part of a movement that is far greater than the local area,” said Michael Campos. Illinois Conference Youth Director, during a Lake Union Herald live broadcast. “They gain this global mission mindset of who they are and what God wants them to be as Christians,”
Honors with a Purpose
Blacksmithing, an honor well known for being taught at various camporees around North America, was taught at the Lake Union Pathfinder Camporee. The instructor, Henry Davis, says that his family has taught the honor over 11,000 times in 14 states. “I’m trying to keep kids doing things with their hands. I want the kids to learn how to do something when things don’t work,” Davis explained. “The first project we make is called a ‘frederick cross’. It’s a piece of scrap steel that we make into something beautiful. We live in a society where if you’re not what people want, they’re going to throw you away. We take that piece of ‘scrap’ and we make it something that’s valuable. I can teach life lessons because while I’ve got their attention because of the fire, and they’ll understand it. It’s my passion.”
Pathfinders were also able to earn several other honors throughout the day, including a drawing honor taught by Nathan Greene, and a street art honor taught by Milton Coronado.
‘Let me bring a solution to you guys’
At the evening worship service, Andres Peralta, associate youth director at the General Conference, spoke on being fearless in dealing with sin. “Let me bring a solution to you guys because some of you want to give up. You don’t want to be fearless anymore.” he said during the service. “You are afraid to face your situation…but Paul said [in Hebrews 12:1-4], ‘Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance…fixing our eyes on Jesus.’”
Peralta concluded by telling the Pathfinders that each of them needs to “run from sin with perseverance” and to “never give up, even if the friend that is beside you gets tired.”
Samuel Girven, 15, is a student at Northview Adventist School and ASPIRE Academy