Friday, October 21, 2011

Teen Missions International

We have been involved with Teen Missions since 2000. Before that we lived in England so there was just no way to get kids to FL to camp and back. In 2000 Tyler and Jessica went as Peanuts. Those are 6-9 year old children.

That was Tyler's only time to go as he didn't care for it. Jessica continued to go off and on, and once Jeff and Adam were old enough to be Peanuts, they went too. They went as preteens and then Adam went twice as a teen.

This is Jeff in preteens. He doesn't look too thrilled. It's a tough program. No frills. You train hard and you go to your mission field. It's not church camp where there are games and such. There is training, nightly rallies, occasional swimming and classes in carpentry, painting, and cement mixing and pouring. There are also Bible classes and classes about organization and other life skills.

Putting the books of the Bible blocks in order is part of the obstacle course.

They added a Mustard Seed program which is for ages 4, 5 and 6 along with a parent. This was Jasmine's first year. She was four.

This was my only year. I only slept about an hour a night the four nights because it's hot and loud. So Rick went the next two years with Jasmine. He can sleep anywhere through anything. It's also like VBS 24/7 and I can't do that. Well, I can but it's not my favorite. But we no longer have anyone Mustard Seed age. Look how little and cute Jasmine was.

There were two teams. This is only one of them. The program has really grown since then and there are a lot more Mustard Seeds now. Jasmine looks so small next to the others.

This was her 2nd or 3rd year. She was an old pro by then.

The tents and surrounding areas are checked for neatness.

Obstacle course.

Adam's first year as a teen.
They built covered wagons to be used at the camp.

I don't have pictures from all the years the kids went. Jessica went to NM as a preteen in 2004. I remember that because we had Jasmine 3 1/2 years before we could adopt her and then it happened while Jessica was in New Mexico! We held up her prayer card in the adoption pictures.

Then of course Jasmine and Jessica went last year. Jasmine was a preteen (she skipped Peanuts so went at ages 4, 5, 6 and then not again until 10), and Jessica was leader. It was a tough summer for Jasmine. She has a lot of anxiety and separation issues. She's not going this year, and we'll decide year by year. One problem I see is that if she remains in band, she'll have to attend band camp each summer so won't be able to go.
Jessica cooked.

At the project site in AZ.

All this to say, three are going to TMI summer 2012. Adam is going to Peru. In the past he chose Haiti and Belize but never raised his money so ended up staying in FL one year and on the Indiana choir team the next. This will be his first year overseas and his last year at TMI. The following summer he'll be working full time to save for college.

The twins are going for the first time. It did not work out to take them to Mustard Seeds the two summers they were home. One of them is pouring a sidewalk to the Covered Wagons Adam built a few years ago. The other will be building trusses to go over the sidewalk.

The twins only need $279 each. Adam needs $3,199. I will be helping him, but he also has to raise two-thirds of it himself. If anyone wants to help, there will be a donation button on the right side. Just indicate who the donation is for.

Jessica is not able to lead a team this summer due to problems it caused with her boss last year : ( She also needs to work during the summer to have college money. She might be a Peanut leader--it's only a week long--but hasn't decided yet. The Explorer camp she goes to is also that week and this is the last summer she can go. Then she turns 21 and ages out of the program.

1 comment:

Karen said...

That sounds like a tough, but good camp. I think the experience would be a good learning tool. Lots of work for the adults too. :)