Bringing families to Christ
In addition to daily social and educational work, Christian Compassion Ministries also holds several Bible-based evangelistic camps each year. The camps are tailored to specific groups, such as those on the Educational Assistance Programme (EAP) or those living on the street.
Last April, the ninth EAP camp was held at Crystal Beach, Zambales. This was the first joint camp for couples and teens and the main theme was on strengthening family relationships.
Around 150 campers attended the three-day camp and each sponsored child came with their parents or parent. Most families were from slum areas, except for two who came from the Livelihood project, but all have huge needs.
Although there was plenty of fun, there was a time for devotions in the morning, followed by Bible studies on God’s purpose for the family. A Filipino movie about families was shown which was used for discussion and illustration.
Drop-in centre camps
Last year CCM hosted its fourth drop-in centre camp, where social workers took around 100 street people and their families away to a site nearly three hours’ drive from Cubao. Many of the campers were former or current drug addicts, several have served time and some previous attendees are currently in prison.
The theme for the camp was God’s mercy to undeserving people and the main messages dealt with examples of this in the lives of three Old Testament characters. Virgo, who is in charge of the drop-in centre, led the camp. There were three seminars with practical teaching on drugs, work and ‘What is your aim for the future?’
Teams leading small groups also shared God’s Word, while another team organised activities and Bible stories for the 25 children.
Some campers have heard the gospel many times, but there are still many on drugs and with enormous problems. There are so many lost without Jesus Christ.
However, as social worker Matt Gamston, who works on the Livelihood homeless project, says: ‘Over the four years of doing drop-in centre camps, we’ve seen some massive encouragements: two baptised believers, a handful of others who we think are converted and the numbers regularly at our Bible study. We’ve also seen the deepening of relationships with so many of them’.
In his prayer letter, Matt adds: ‘It’s a humbling privilege to see Christians serving them and to have Christians in different countries paying and praying for the camp. I am deeply thankful that for three days we can take them away on camp and, with the authority of God’s Word, tell them of his offer of forgiveness’.