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When one thinks of Nepal, they might think of Mt. Everest, yaks, and snowy mountain peaks, but that is only a small part of Nepal. This visit took Dan Brooks and Andrew Stoner to a more lush and tropical part of Nepal. At 2,000 feet of elevation, they were surrounded by forested mountains and a beautiful valley.

A few years ago, Dan attempted to meet our host, Mahesh, but was never able to make it to his location since the roads were washed out by flooding. A local missionary in Kathmandu came to the rescue and helped Dan around the city. Those plans falling through led to a series of events and opportunities that only God can arrange. On this visit, though, the weather was good and Dan and Andrew were able to make the 3 hour drive through the mountains of Nepal to arrive at their final destination.

Mahesh is a 3rd generation Christian and pastor. His grandfather, who was eventually imprisoned for a year because of his faith, still serves as the senior pastor of the church. What a privilege to meet a faithful servant of the Lord and his faithful family. Dan and Andrew worshiped with this group of local believers on Sunday. They spent much time in prayer and enjoyed inspiring singing. A great deal of time was also spent in prayer.

Buddhist culture permeates the region creating many differences from an American way of life. Worship services are on Saturday because Sunday is like an American Monday – busy with work and school. This camp was timed during a holiday. Unfortunately, because it was a Buddhist holiday, the local Buddhist teens could not attend because of their religious obligations. They hope to change the date to one that would enable more unsaved teens to attend in the future.  

Youth from seven churches came to the small church property – arriving before counselor training had finished. This group of teens arrived with great energy, and a greater age range than had been anticipated. The camp ended up with 60 campers and 12 younger siblings. Two of the female counselors were happy to take the little ones, which left ten counselors for the teens. Slight adjustments were made to the schedule to accommodate the wide age range, and they seemed to work well.

The idea of camp was new to all the counselors, but they did well interacting with their campers. Most of these campers and counselors knew each other from church fellowships over the years which made it easy for everyone to jump in and enjoy camp.

Well timed rain storms made for a muddy trail, but impacted little else. The campers enjoyed extra inside free time games. They enjoyed playing Ninja, UNO, and other indoor games. But, after the rain tapered off, an unused road became a soccer arena!

The goodbyes were sweet but hard with this small group of believing friends. Dan and Andrew are already making a strategy for next year and look forward to returning!

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