USA: Honolulu Family Church Hosts Camp for Youth
On October 15, 2016, the Honolulu Family Church held a two-day Youth Camp at the YMCA’s Camp Erdman, located in the beautiful seaside of the north shore of Oahu. Fourteen middle and high school students attended the workshop, which was staffed by college-aged Unificationists.
Josh and Seline Nichols, a young Unificationist couple from Honolulu, were the powerhouse behind the workshop. It was their touch that made the group have a truly brotherly and sisterly feel. The youth were divided into three teams—called families—which were led by Seyoung Nakama, Tsurue Matsuba, and Rika Otsubo. Participants appreciated the emphasis on family. “I enjoyed the time I spent getting to know different brothers and sisters,” reflected one young man. “[This] let me know the different sides that each person has.”
At the workshop, Rev. Kazuo Takami, District Pastor of Hawaii, led several lectures focused on the Human Fall. These sessions helped students to deepen their understanding of humanity’s root problems that stem from the Fall. The youth also had a chance to hear stories of True Father and True Mother’s early school days. This gave participants a glimpse of the challenges that our founders had to overcome in their lives.
In addition to lectures, the camp was packed with fun activities. On the afternoon of the first day, participants learned archery and went swimming in the Oahu waters. That evening, the children relaxed at a campfire by the sea. At this campfire, they found the courage to open their hearts and share testimonies about their own lives. “I enjoyed the… campfire and testimonies. It was a great bonding time and [the testimonies were]… sometimes very touching, sometimes very funny,” reflected one high school student. The next day, participants and staff sang Unification hymns, or “Holy Songs,” at the Honolulu Family Church. This tribute to tradition marked the end of an action-packed workshop.
Staff and participants both agree that the youth had a wonderful time. “I was very nervous at first but it was really fun…. [I hope] I can go to another one,” shared one middle school participant. The young Unificationists who led the workshop were happy to help create this experience. “I’m really glad that we did this camp to help middle school and high school students learn more about our faith,” they said.
Stay tuned for more updates about what young Unificationists are doing both on and off this beautiful island, and share a story from your own local community at familyfed.org/share-a-story.