In the end of August 2015 Samara United Methodist church for the second time hosted JAT Christian youth camp (German: Jugend Actions Tage – «JAT»). This time there were over fifty participants from the churches of Moscow, Samara, Ulyanovsk, Syzran and German cities. During the whole week they lived in the church: young people discussed different topics, talked, relaxed, prepared evening shows, took part in workshops. Below you will find some photos and testimonies from the participants.
Nikolay Ruzaev, Samara:
«With great joy I can say that it was great to participate in Samara-JAT again. It was an unforgettable time, a time for new friends, long hours of talking both in native and foreign languages. The topics were quite interesting too, from the Christian point of view we reviewed various aspect of the theme «Who I am and what is around me». The speakers let us think and use our creativity in regard to a topic presented each day. That’s how together with other active young people we were able to go deeper into the questions.
The time flew so fast, we had so much to do, but we would be really glad to rewind and play it one more time.
There are lots of impressions, I could speak for quite long, but first of all I would like to thank God for letting me meet the organizers and all these wonderful people. I would also like to thank the team for being so welcoming and loving and so patient with the youth. Whatever you say, young people are amazing!”
Gleb Berlyand, Ulyanovsk:
«JAT turned out to be really cool! We had a lot of fun and we learnt much, too. I really liked to sing, take part in the workshops, perform in the evening shows. The atmosphere was warm and friendly. However, most of all I liked the people who were at JAT. They were all so responsive, they were interesting to talk to».
Nikita Azin, Samara:
«It was an amazing time at JAT and I would like to thank all workshop leaders, I am already looking forward to the next camp. Thank you! »
Ksyusha Li, Moscow:
«I want to go back to JAT so badly! I liked absolutely everything. I think the topics were relevant to each of the participants. The idea of evening shows was great too. Each day was full of bright emotions, there was not a single minute of boredom. It was just amazing!!
I will definitely go next time. I thank everyone for such an amazing week!”
Nikita Bogdanov, Moscow:
«During JAT I especially like the music accompanying most of the events, warm and relaxed atmosphere, active participation of workshop leaders. The night of Russian and German cultures was also a lot of fun. JAT is another opportunity to relax and forget about daily routine».
Voronova Alexandra, Samara:
«JAT – we’ve done it!
«JAT» – Jugend Actions Tage – Christian youth camp that took place during the last week of summer. That was the second time that JAT was held in Russia, and I am for one, it was a great success. Frankly speaking, for me it was just «wow», «super» and many other exclamations!
It was the first time that I was in the organization team. Many things came new and I even looked at myself from a different angle. If I was not the only one who experienced this strange feeling, then the aim has been reached, since the topic of the week was «Hello, let me introduce myself».
The subtopics changed each day, the whole day was devoted to discussions and preparations of the evening shows. The workshops illustrated the ideas by various means, however, the goal was not to show yourself, but rather «create something new and praise God through it» (As was stated by Alena Pyrogova in the opening speech). The workshops were different: creativity, music, dancing, theatre, video, invitations. They all tried to answer to the topics of the day: «Where am I from?», «Despicable me», «Amazing me», «Church 4.0 and me». Where is my start, am I here accidentally? Am I despicable and not worth to be loved and accepted? Can I have super power, and where can I find it? Church of the future, how do I relate to it? All these questions we tried to address to God and find answers in His Word, gifts, love and presence.
I hope that all the participants, guests, leaders and organizers received answers, corrections and encouragement. I believe that God is using such events, he opens hearts, moves the boundaries, connects in Him.
I thank everyone who helped in preparation and who made it so vibrant with his or her presence! Thank God for letting it all happen! We’ve done it!
The testimonies were collected by A. Voronova
Photos and video: bishop E. Khegay
Translate by M. Kvyatkovskiy