Sunday, July 3, 2011

Righteousness, peace, joy.

hello everyone! hope everyone is doing great! well, recent happening is i've just got back from Holy Family Church Youth Camp 2011 at El Sanctuary in Malacca. I'll just share my experience about the camp and how it has touched me in one way or another. Earlier, during the testimonies time, I did wanna go up and give my testimony but I thought let the participants do it. Anyway, i'll get to that later. 


For the past few months, the committee has been working real hard in finding the theme, speaker, place and everything in between for our annual camp. So, its been decided that the theme for this year's camp will be "To Believe and To Live" and our speaker would be Dr. Steven Selvaraju. Many of us were not familiar with Dr. Steven as none of us had gone to any of his talks hence we did not know what kind of presenter he was. What we did know was that, he was really good and knowledgeable in the Catholic faith which is why he was chosen as our speaker. 


I remember a few weeks and days before the camp, the committee would have frequent meet ups to discuss on our updates for camp. We were contemplating much on the speaker because we thought and assumed it was going to be boring but Christine, our ever optimistic leader, assured us that he is good and fatherly. So, the day of the camp came, my parents were working and there was no one to send me to church. Finally, Juan picked me up and as we were all going up on the bus, I saw a lot of enthusiastic faces which was good. 


When we reached there, we had ice breaking session, got to know our group members, got our rooms and so on. The highlight was the food, hands down. Have you ever gone for any camp and had lasagna for dinner? We did! :) The first session was basically getting to know about our faith and introduction by Dr. Steven. During that time, I could see many faces who were kind of regretting they came for camp because the speaker was a bit too deep in his sharing. 


Nevertheless, the next session was praise and worship led by Juan. It was  a good time to remove all the hustle and bustle of our lives and spend some time with God, which I doubt some of us do. I felt lighter that night after the session though I kept on freaking out coz I had a phobia of standing in front of crowds and what more, singing. The session went well though, and that concludes the first day.


The next day, we had the same morning prayer like our last camp then proceeded for breakfast. The session after breakfast was about the Catechism of the Catholic Church(CCC). Honestly, i've never opened the book my whole life. Yesterday was the first time. The session was a bit draggy and heavy for us, I could see that but I tried my best to grasp whatever I could in that short period of time, and I did find out some things I never knew about the Catholic faith. 


Dr.Steven saw and knew that we were feeling restless because the topic was heavy and he did his best to make it more interactive. I really admire him for that, he never gives up. He even re-did his programme that day because of us. After lunch, we had another short praise and worship session which was led by me. I was so nervous and my hands were cold and shaking. I couldnt throw out my voice and I felt like I disappointed everyone. I couldnt concentrate on the next session either. But my group members helped me out of it. They're always so funny and keeping the group alive. My group name was 'Tha-Bomb' by the way :) Alfred, Anne, Vidiana, Flora, Harvinth, Justin, Anastasia, and Kimberly, you guys rock! :) 


Somehow I cant help but think that I did bad because of my sins, many many sins in my heart and that was God's way of punishing me. Throughout the day, as we had our games and group discussions, I felt slightly better. I felt even better after watching all the skits performed by the groups. Never knew there were so many talented youths in Holy Family. All the groups did a good job I must say. No winner or loser. 


The highlight of the second day, has to be the praise and worship session led by Amanda. She did a really really good job. During this praise and worship, I decided to surrender everything to God and just let Him be with me for that time. And I know He was because I could feel it. I was overwhelmed with tears in my eyes and I could feel all my fears and sins swept away. And after that, of course, we all slept late, talking ghost stories, playing cards, playing random games and just bonding with everyone. That concludes the second day. 


Today, the sessions were basically to refresh our memory on our faith. I didnt really concentrate today, was really sleepy :s During praise and worship session after lunch, I had no fear in me at all. I sang, I danced, I jumped. And I did it all without having the fear of what people would think, how bad I sounded. It was all for God and boy, did everyone had a good time. Good job to the praise and worship team, Amanda, Freddie, Juan and Shaun. =) 


Next, was the testimonies. I did feel like going up and sharing but then better let the participants share their thoughts on the camp. My heart really melted and I was so touched by their testimonies that I teared too. I mean, we were all complaining even before the camp started and after experiencing so much together, none of us wanted to leave. Then of course, they had to play "If We Hold On Together". I started la crying, coz the song was so emo and I was feeling it. Its just so hard to explain that feeling, i'm sure you know how it feels. 


On the way back, I was just thinking about how much we've all learned and wondering if this will be just another church camp as always where you go for the camp, gain so much experience then it will only last a few weeks then its back to square one. I know for a fact, that when I came home today, its always been square one. No matter how much I pray and do whatever it is for you to change and hoping that I can forgive you, its just so hard. You cant and never will change. I just dont know why. 


Its just that, I hope God will somehow or rather touch you and show you the way and bring happiness to all of us because we need someone better than what you are now. If there's one word you should know, its called LOVE. I dont see that in you at all and I do pray and hope that you will see that someday. And i'm also praying that I will someday, forgive you too for everything you've done. 


Sorry about that, was connecting it to the camp experience. I really really love my committee very much and we all did a good job making this camp possible. Christine, Alfred, Alvin, Juan, Glynn, Helena, Tracy, Vivian, Anne, Freddie, Shaun, Amanda and Pamela, you guys are the best committee I could ever ask for and we've been journeying together a lot for the past 2 years. It breaks my heart to see us leave. I love you guys a lot! :) 


On the other hand, i'm glad that i've achieved my one objective which is bringing you for the camp and seeing such joy in your face with friends around you. You're not alone and you dont have to be, you know that? I'm happy that you made a lot of new friends and gained new experiences. I do hope that it will continue growing in the time to come =) 


To this, I end my super long blog post. I know its not that great but I just felt like writing something about the camp. I learned things I never knew, found peace for a moment, friendships, all this is one camp, is just amazing :) I do hope everyone have a good week! God bless! =) 

Call upon the name of the Lord and be saved