Diocese of Free State AYM at Golden Gate

The Anglican Youth Ministries in the Diocese of Free State had an AYM Camp , which took place from the 1 till 4 December 2015 at Golden Gate Wilgenhof Environmental centre.  The camp was a great success where, they had 40 young people and 1 Priest attending the event. The program went according to plan as all speakers and topics were on point addressing under the theme “I’m a young Anglican and I’m Proud, We are part of Creation, save water and live longer.

Upon arrival an orientation  of SanParks was led by their host Nelly who told them more about the History of Golden Gate , the animals they have and what SanParks stands for(note : Golden Gate is a grass Park therefore only grazing animals are kept at the park ). After that they moved to the camp site to take on the Brandwag trail which is the most longest and hardest trail for  groups. This exercise took 2h30min to complete and the hero of the day was baby Tswanelo (four year old) boy who joined his dad on the trail and walked up the hill. On the tip of the cliff you can sight the beauty of the reserve as this is one on the top points. The ended with fun games and canoeing.  In the late afternoon one of the youth member and Green Anglican activist Mokhobo Finger took them through a two hour guided retreat under the theme connecting with nature and closed off with a prayer for good use of water in our land.

On one of the sessions Rev Mokheshe Koma led a special morning prayer under the theme “Don’t let generational habits get to you.”  His talk was encouraging to the young people, some of the things he mentioned were that it might not be our fault that the earth is in the state that it’s in currently, but we are to blame if we grow up and die living it worse or the same way we found it. We need to stand up and show our repentance towards nature, and nature will itself heal.  Members were asked to show a sign of repentance by taking a 3km walk, to the cathedral cave in complete silence, where the silence was ended with a creative Eucharist service.

Bino Makhalanyene, youth coordinator for the diocese said “The highlight of the week would be the last day walk, in which at we prayed for rain that morning and asked our members that we should take that walk as a sign of repentance towards creation asking God for rain. Straight after the Eucharist, God provided and showered us with drops of rain, we all could not complain for we had asked and He provided.”

-Bino Makhalanyane

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