Sorry for missing yesterday. We got back to our rooms later than expected.
Things have been going really great so far! Yesterday morning we had a fair amount of rain in the morning which impacted our service projects, but we were able to improvise with some other projects and keep going. The weather cleared just in time for our afternoon Bible Clubs and Sports Camps! Our Dolton site had a fantastic day with young kids learning their memory verses and singing songs. The sports camp was very successful too! Last night, the "Dolton Group" moved to a local Rec center for their 9th-12th grade Sports Camp and played an organized 3 on 3 basketball tournament! It was great to see our students joinging in with other students from the community to form teams!
The "Park Forrest" team had a smaller turnout for our afternoon camps but we still had a fantastic time with the kids playing basketball, football and volleyball. In the evening they joined the other team at the Rec center!
The rain stayed away for most of the day!! We were able to go on a prayer walk around the surrounding neighborhood. It was great to pray over the community as well as meet a few passers by and pray with them. This is definitely a community that is losing hope. In meeting a few of the locals, they seem very focused on the negatives in the community, but they seem very excited to hear what we and the local church are doing!
We went from there to our service projects...Some groups were painting fences, some were cleaning parks. We had 3 seperate groups working on cleaning up abandoned houses in a local neighborhood. The house my group was working on was in pretty rough shape, but the teens went to work and did so great. Luckily we had Elliot Morse on our team who seems to be our resident landscaper/tree cutter downer :)! It was a very hot morning and it seemed like God sent a cool rain at just the perfect time to keep us refreshed.
In the afternoon we went to our sites for Bible Clubs and Sports Camps today. I heard great things from Alex King about how well the children were listening and participating. They seem very eager to hear about God! Dave Stack said he shared the bible story to a group of boys and when he was finished they were begging to hear more Bible stories!! How awesome is our God!
On the Park Forrest camp, we had a small group again, but all of the kids who cam on Monday, came back! That really helped us start to build some great relationships with these students! We ran them through some volleyball drills and started playing a game. When it became apparent that volleyball may not be the best choice, Adam Clouthier and Matt Leistra came to the rescue by making up a game on the spot! Sort of a Volleyball/Dodgeball hybrid that the kids really had fun with! Afterward, Linnea Schaefer shared her testimony to the students and did a fantastic job!!!
In the evening, both groups went back to the Rec center. The word on the 3 on 3 tournament got out and the community really showed up tonight. The gym was packed!!! In fact, the team consisting of Dave Stack, Robby Schnall and Tim Rutkowski actually won the tournament! What a great way to form relationships with these guys and girls in the community! Another group started playing kickball outside and soon all sorts of teens and young kids were coming up and playing with us!
We serve a great God and He is being glorified this week in Dolton! Continue to pray for the students taht we are reaching out to. Pray that through our activity, wall will continue to break down and we will be able to share the Gospel with them!