Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14 Have you ever noticed how kids tend to squirm and wiggle in Church? They have energy to burn and an attention span that is just as jumpy! How do you share the Good News of Jesus Christ with someone who just can’t sit and listen? At Overlook Retreat and Camp Ministries, we jump and wiggle with them! We demonstrate God’s love and forgiveness in a hundred different ways through a host of activities and experiences reflecting the full range of living including work, play, and rest. Our summer missionaries relate the Gospel message not only from a spiritual perspective, but also how it pertains to us intellectually, emotionally, physically, and socially. How do we do this? What was the Exodus? We go on it, discovering the 10 commandments and what they mean for daily living as we go. What is Easter? We gather in the upper room for communion, visit the crucifixion through drama, and celebrate the resurrection with a visit to the empty tomb at day break. How did the church form? We worship in the catacombs and witness before the persecution of Roman Soldiers in simulation games. You can imagine the energy and creativity needed for leadership in these experiences. And then, there is bed time, homesickness and all the little crisis of day to day living must be tended to. Unfortunately, the young men and women who are ready and willing are penalized for sharing themselves with lost income from jobs they would hold if not serving in mission. Following an excellent summer’s mission work, too many of these emissaries for Christ have apologized, “I can’t come back next year. I need to earn money for school.”
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YOU CAN HELP!! Perhaps you do not have the time or energy to join them in this mission, but you can encourage them and assist them with financial resources they need to stay involved. The typical student incurs annual expenses of over $15,000. They hope to earn a portion of this through summer employment. Summer fees at Overlook can only generate an average of $1400 for 9 weeks of mission service. Won’t you prayerfully consider what you can do to help these young men and women in sharing Christ with our youth and children?