Italy 2019 Update #3
First day of camp, what an exciting time for the team. Our morning began at 7 am, where we enjoyed breakfast and heard a Pebble Challenge from Mark 10:13-16. After breakfast, we departed for Forli, which is a city 25 minutes away. Upon arrival, we met the camp staff and were introduced to the entire camp by the missionary. Out of the 40 kids, we had 14 that would be involved with the basketball portion of the morning. This week’s camp theme is “The Great Exchange,” so one of the coaches shared the day’s “Sportsmanship Thought” on Sacrifice. He highlighted the importance of sacrifice and how humbling it can be especially for an athlete, but also shared that the great sacrifice known to man was Jesus Christ dying on the cross in our place. After the welcoming, we got the kids stretched and spent some time doing skill development. Around snack time, one of the coaches shared his testimony to the entire camp (40+ kids). We concluded the basketball portion with some 3v3 games and a coaches’ challenge. Following the morning session, we ate lunch with the kids and spent the afternoon doing various team-building activities from water balloon races, to frisbee soccer. The kids at this camp are very competitive which made for a great afternoon. After camp, we spent some time debriefing with the entire staff and made our way back to Faenza in which we got showers and decided to do Team Time before dinner. Dinner was spaghetti, which the team loved.
Tuesday, started off like yesterday. We at breakfast together at 7 and heard a Pebble Challenge from on the coaches. At camp, we noticed a number of kids missing as we only had 13 kids for our basketball session including a couple of new ones. Some of the kids were sick and some were tired and decided to stay with the other group of campers. The “Sportsmanship Thought” for today was Respect; which was a main rule of the entire camp. We highlighted the importance of respecting one another. After a morning of skill development and competitions, we spent time with the kids during lunch, which was pizza. Following lunch, we headed home to get some rest and do Team Time before meeting up with a family for a small picnic in a local park near where we were staying. Many of us met this family during last year’s trip. After we ate, we headed to the countryside to participate in a 6k “walk.” The walk turned it to a hike as we experienced various points of incline and decline during the walk. During the walk, we had several interactions with various people who asked questions from “what do your shirts mean?” to “why are you Americans are here?” At the conclusion of the race, we enjoyed various drinks and food known to the region. The team was pretty tired but several of the coaches were able to have a deep conversation with the husband from the family we had a picnic with. The conversation was centered around “Is Jesus the only way to heaven or can you get to heaven by your works?” The husband had to get home before the conversation was finished but you can tell that he wanted to talk more on the topic.
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