Day 7 – Thursday:

Today, we all woke up quite early due to a rather emphatic rooster or three. All of the meals here at camp are absolutely delicious, and for breakfast, we ate cheese, eggs – and of course, the classic – arepas. I think some of us must have eaten arepas at every meal on the trip so far…And we’re not complaining! (Yet. Not complaining yet. We’ll try our level best not to.)

Breakfast passed quickly in everyone’s anticipation to watch the World Cup game between Colombia and Senegal. Needing at least a draw to progress to the knockout stages, the ‘match,’ as they call it, was very tense for all the Colombians. Thankfully, Colombia won, which put everyone in a good mood – and a somewhat loud mood, at that. Let’s just say that we woke the roosters up this time. With shouting and horns and even distant fireworks!

Once the match had been sufficiently celebrated, we played a marvelously muddy icebreaker game until lunch. In previously assigned small groups, we made shoes-to-go-under-our-real-shoes out of cardboard and string. We then ran races in these ‘shoes,’ with our feet tied to each others’. About halfway through, rain started to come down, hence the marvelous mud. Nearer to the end of the game, we were instructed to crawl, hence our polluted pants…it was a great bonding experience for everyone.

After lunch, the first session began. This whole retreat, the Canadian worship team has been leading songs that the Colombian campers really seem to enjoy. And we love singing along with familiar songs in Spanish. Following worship, Isabel and Justin shared moving testimonies, which Jerusha then related to the sermon topic of a Renewed Soul. She continued on to speak about Mary, the mother of Jesus, and how she experienced a renewed her soul in God. After the sermon, we split off into small groups. Everyone had very meaningful discussions, founded on questions regarding the testimonies and the sermon. The team has felt astonished so far at the level of intelligence and spiritual maturity contained within the youth and young adults here.

The campers were then given some free time. They played *fútbol, card games, swum in the pool, and socialized. Part of the team hung out on the fútbol field and participated in Watching Baby Clara Beat Esh At Fútbol, as well as Hardcore Reps with Pastor Greg. *Real ‘soccer’

Later, everyone got together for another icebreaker game, a scavenger hunt that lasted until we were all told to have our trojas – simple Colombian camp songs – ready for flawless performance in the auditorium, in front of all persons present. The hilarious trojas were performed until dinner, delicious yet again.

Not long after eating, the campers, and leaders went back into sanctuary for the second session. Shady and Julia gave their testimonies. They were both comfortable in front of the crowd (in appearance, at least), and their stories were well received by the audience, being that they were very inspirational. Next came another worship song, and then Pastor Greg delivered a message about the renewal of Peter’s mind, followed by a Gospel invitation.

Following the second session, the Go Team held a meeting. Our honesty and openness with each other has proven invaluable to us as a team, as well as to each person individually. We are so glad to have each other.

When the meeting was over, the Colombians sitting around a campfire were joined by a few Canadians-trying-and-failing-to-sing-in-Spanish. It was a great time of connecting with new people, and we sang our hearts out (during the English songs). Finally, the campfire put out, we went to bed exhausted after a long and fulfilling day.


• Sleep. We all need more rest

• Protection over our health and safety at Bello Oriente, where we are going in two days and for which we are not yet fully prepared

•That we remain in relatively good health, seeing as have proven prone to catch diseases almost unexpectedly

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