The youths led games, taught classes, and shared Bible stories with the day campers.
Kevin Ruthven, youth leader from Rehoboth CRC, said, “Many of the teens from Rehoboth are used to ministry teams coming to their own area. This opportunity gives our young people a chance to serve.”
The two churches have formed a partnership. Last fall a team from Oak Hills traveled to Rehoboth to help out with some construction projects.
Kristen Holtsoi (l) and Jessica Muse (r) help Charissa Keebaugh and Lucy Gardener.
Nelson Bates, from Rehoboth, said his trip to Beaverton was the first time he’d been on an airplane. “I love helping the kids and teaching them about God,” he said.
Rev. Carl Leep, pastor of Oak Hills, said, “[The day camp] gives young adults the opportunity to exercise leadership on the job.” Because the camp draws in more than 120 children and requires at least 60 volunteers, extra help is always welcomed.
The Rehoboth team, along with a few members from Oak Hills, also participated in local service projects in the Portland, Ore., area in the evenings.
They shopped for items to give to children in need, volunteered at a rehabilitation center, and learned about some of the needs in downtown Portland.
“We live in one of the third poorest counties in the country,” said Rehoboth CRC’s youth leader, Ruthven. “Our young people learned that needs are not just where we are but everywhere.”
Leep hopes the ministry partnership between the two churches will continue. “It has helped our people see serving is a two-way relationship. We can learn together.”