Planned and organised by Nairobi Central SDA Church Youth Social Committee under the umbrella of the Church leadership, the youth Easter Retreat was a great success and all glory goes to the Almighty God. The Easter Retreat was held from Friday 3rd to Monday 6th April 2015 at the Laikipia Place Camping site in Nanyuki. In attendance were youth from the Nairobi Central Church and from other churches. The total number of youth who attended this retreat was one hundred and twenty one (121). There was hence a great turnout for this retreat with a fusion of senior youths and ambassadors which was really commendable.
A youth retreat offers time for young people to withdraw from their normal activities. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, this time apart provides youth with an opportunity to encounter Jesus, reflect upon the working of God in their lives, and formulate their personal responses to the call of discipleship received in baptism.
Easter Youth Retreat Activities at a glance The treasure hunt: This is the first activity that was
carried out upon arrival at the camp. The main aim of this activity was to enable the youth to
familiarize themselves with different elements of the campsite, to promote teamwork, to encourage
in-depth Bible study and to jog memories on the Bible and SDA fundamental beliefs.
Singspiration: This experience has become a typical first Friday evening of every month event
for the youth. This beloved hour of prayer and worship was given the name Singspiration to reflect its ultimate purpose – to inspire the youth to worship God together as one body, praising the name of Jesus.
Sabbath Sermon: The sermon was delivered by Pastor Gerald Mochoge. The title of the sermon was ‘The army of God, the defenders of our faith’, Key Verse: Jude 3. ‘Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints’. The pastor emphasized on three main points: Diligence, Understanding and Rigour as the key factors that the army of God must emulate. This calls for Lifestyle, Health and Sabbath reform.
Outreach - Tumaini Children’s’ Home visit: The youth paid a visit to Tumaini Children’s Home on 5th April 2015. The home is located a few kilometers from Nanyuki town and hosts HIV-positive children. It is managed by Italians who work within the Archdiocese of Nyeri. Tumaini caters for 41 children from different (sometimes far) places and backgrounds. This visit was a great opportunity to share with the children in song and prayer. The youth also donated money and bought dry foodstuff and toiletries for the children. It was a powerful outreach session with the young ones, truly a blessing.
Team building: The aim of the teambuilding was to encourage teamwork, socialization and a common understanding. Team building requires the realization of personal strengths, feelings and indrances of each working member. Several factors can hinder relationships in the church such
as low morale, lack of understanding and poor communication among others.
Sugar Cubes: The Sugar cubes activity was designed to provide the youth with an opportunity to inspire and encourage each other through written notes. Envelopes with names of each member who attended the retreat were stuck up on the wall and everyone had an opportunity to write inspiring notes/quotes to as many people as possible. The envelopes were handed over to each member just before departure from the Campsite. Everyone got an inspiration quote for the soul.
Success of the Retreat
Our Almighty God dignified this event and the success of the retreat was not just a matter of having the right techniques and activities, the retreat experience provided possibilities for enhancing young people’s spirituality. The main aims of the retreat were:
To Reach up: To develop in every individual a personal relationship with their God through personal Bible study and prayer to prepare youth for a lifelong walk with Christ;
To Reach across: To foster leadership cohesiveness across all entities within the youth ministry, to model servant leadership and to promote unity among the youth;
To reach out: To extend a range of services that provide effective care, nurture and healing for the needy in society.
Upcoming December Youth Retreat
It is hoped that the custom December retreat will be held this year. The retreat will target all the junior and senior youth and the programme will be informed by the lessons learnt from the Easter Retreat. All youth are invited to plan for the December Retreat.