All through the summer our folk were involved in various summer outreach – some far afield and some a little closer to home. This time for Trudi there were no long haul flights, just a bit of a drive!
On the 21st July I travelled back down to Tramore, County Waterford to be a part of the United Beach Missions team there. Yet again it was a brilliant week and we had a great time leading the day camp for the children.
The team gelled so well right from the beginning – most of us had been on last year’s team together so along with the ‘newbies’ we were able to get stuck in right from the first night!
It was lovely to see the people we had met last year again – especially the kids as we were able to pick up where we had left off. Having friendships already made meant it was that bit easier to chat to them about Jesus and for them to feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and feelings.
Also, the acceptance of us from friends and families was amazing – even from those who had no interest in God or that our Christian faith was the reason for us being there. Not one person was annoyed at us for taking up space and being noisy on the beach, or tried to stop us from telling their children about Jesus. This was an improvement from last year.
The ongoing support from the local churches was so appreciated – they have such a heart for the children in their area and continually pray for us and carry out great work themselves throughout the year.
*Attending these churches on the Sunday before our week began was such a boost for us knowing there weren’t just 20 of us trying to carry out this massive task. Really it’s hundreds of people praying and working with each other, all reaching for a common goal – to see the children of Waterford come to know Jesus as their saviour.
*For the first time ever there has been a ‘meet up’ of local Christian teenagers from each of the churches during this past year. It turned out that some actually attended the same school but didn’t realise there were other Christians in their classes! This has been such a blessing for them as they can support each other and know they are not alone in an environment where it is so easy to feel isolated as one of the very few Christians.
On a practical level we had great weather throughout the week which allowed us to put on a fun, interactive programme that the kids enjoyed. We had games – (soak the leader being a firm favourite as always), songs, quizzes and stories – lots to keep them entertained. One of the mums we were speaking to said, “Free child-minding?! Of course they’ll go I’ll get peace and quiet to sunbathe for an hour!” That was one of our main selling points I have to admit – but it worked! We had good numbers and were able to tell many children all about God’s love for them. Our two family nights were also well attended and this was a good chance to talk to the parents and get to know them. This allowed for some deeper conversations to open up throughout the week.
God has been and is doing some amazing things in Waterford and after many, many years of prayer over the area it is changing for the better, so please keep these people in your prayers.
Thank you also for your prayerful support for me going to Tramore. There were times when I felt out of my comfort zone, giving my testimony in front of the boys at the teens soccer night or leading parts of the morning programme, but it was such a great experience doing something so rewarding for God and having the support of my church is really appreciated.