Monday, August 06, 2007

The Essential 3 ::: Cameroon - 2006

In 2006, building on the streak we started with 2005, I helped lead a team of 12 students and leaders to Cameroon. Cameroon was also the home of one of GCC's families and they jumped at the idea to host a team of American students. Months of their preparation culminated in our arrival and a short youth camp three hours outside of the capital city. Two days after camp, our team was witness to the first ever student small groups in the capital city started by this missions agency. On to the 3 essential questions:

1. Am I planning to have an impact that lasts for 500 years?
Local, Cameroonian youth workers that are being trained. A host mission family that already has a well thought out exit strategy. Cameroonian students that will be the foundation of politics, science, industry, and the Christ movement when they get older. Three elements that meant our trip was more than a short term mission trip - it was the beginning of centuries of impact.

2. Can both host and teams trust each other because we are partners?
Once again, having a host that was part of GCC's network of families around the world was vital. The experience was built from both sides, balancing need, talent, context and impact.
The crux of this trust was displayed via our trip to the Pygmy village, during our camp. G had decided to stay home since one of our students was down with a stomach bug. Instead, one of his indigenous youth ministry leaders would be the point person. It all worked according to plan, except when she asked me to explain the Gospel to our Pygmy Indian friends. Well, someone's plan anyway.

3. How will I engage the culture?
Host homes. Pygmy indians. Living with Cameroonians in a beach camp. Our students experienced Cameroonian culture first hand. They still remember and they still know - both in their hearts and in their heads - that the Gospel moves relevantly from culture to culture.

Photo: me and ND and Wlson, two local, Cameroonian youth workers in it for the long haul.
Related: 2006 - Cameroon

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