This school year has seen 360 youth from 31 countries participate in BCC’s international youth program in Europe. This week all the groups met for a summer party to mark the end of the year.
By Johanne Reiersrud – Photo by Adelle Cheetham
A varied program was prepared for the weekend, and the festivities began on Friday evening. The participants of the youth program are usually based in different locations, and now many excited young people arrived from Brunstad and from other places in Norway, Denmark, Germany, and Netherlands.
The first part of the evening was devoted to speeches, music, and shorter testimonies, where the theme was “Preserve your heart”. It was inspired from Proverbs 4 in the Bible:
“Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.”
Weekly Bible studies has connected participants from many locations
The youth received many good and encouraging words from both teachers and volunteers who were connected to the youth program during the year.
At Brunstad Bible School, weekly Bible classes are streamed online to other locations. The collaboration with BrunstadTV makes it possible for everyone in the program to receive this instruction, regardless of where they are located.
Gershon Twilley has worked with youth in the exchange program since it started in 2002 and has many positive things to say about this year’s group.
“This is one of the most wholehearted and energetic group of young people I know. During the Bible classes they had a serious interest in the material and were very focused. On their own initiative they started raising money for the mission collection in the spring, which shows both their warm hearts and genuine commitment. It helped to bring a record result at the mission feast in March,” he says with a smile.
Mission: travel home and support the local churches
The evening was a worthy end to the yearly youth program, and an inspiration for the 360 participants who are soon traveling home to their home countries and local churches. They were encouraged to continue to grow in their personal faith life. Many youths testified about what this time has meant for them personally as well as for their faith.
Trips and activities in the Norwegian archipelago
On Saturday morning, seven buses traveled to Telemark and delivered their passengers to the island of Risøya. There were several activities planned on the island, and small groups of smiling friends strolled around in small groups and tried the various posts.
Seize the opportunities in front of you!
After a delicious dinner, the youth gathered at the main house on the island to hear some inspiring words from Bjørn Nilsen. He was interviewed by Gershon Twilley, who asked what he would do if he was young and travelling home from a year in the youth program.
“I would seize the opportunities in front of me, in order to be part of the work taking place in the church. Wether it’s cleaning up after an event, or anything else. Be open to God, and to what he will show you”, he said to the young people.
“When I see a need, it’s possible to help and include others. By embarking on the tasks which God has planned for me, I become a force, regardless of where I am, and I am able to experience the joy of giving.”
Most of the gathered youth have given their time and energy in the last year. Many of them have volunteered for BCC and in projects that support BCC’s mission. BCC is proud to have so many dedicated, enthusiastic youth, and for the resources they provide for the future in their home churches.