I recently attended an International Youth Network conference in Káposztás Megyer (in northern Budapest) to learn about and prepare for the camps they will conduct the beginning of August. The main goal of the IYN and these camps is to take part in mission work that serves the Roma in Hungary, Ukraine, Romania, and Serbia. The camps will bring together youth from all over Europe who want to learn about other people and are motivated to serve God by serving others.
The conference was more of a meet-and-greet for the leaders from Denmark and the youth from Hungary and Estonia to form relationships that will serve as a foundation off of which to grow and branch out from during the upcoming camps. During the conference we worshiped, discussed Biblical texts, sang songs, played games, danced traditional Hungarian dances, ate delicious food, and spent a morning serving the church that was hosting the event. We used Phil Green’s book 40/40 as a basis from which to discuss certain Biblical texts and, as young people, examine where God is in our lives and the world as a whole—it was interesting to hear different perspectives from different parts of the world during our discussions. One aspect of the conference that I really enjoyed was the morning we spent serving our host church by cleaning the building and working on a construction project in the garden. The camps are about service after all, so it was very fitting that we all got the chance to serve while we were together. When we had free time for games, we headed outside for Ninja and Méta, which is like baseball but played with a tennis ball and a wooden paddle. One evening was spent learning and dancing traditional Hungarian dances—it was so fun! All these activities allowed us to learn more about each other and come closer together. It was really great!
I am very happy I had the opportunity to take part in the conference because, along with learning about the great work the IYN does, I met some really amazing people and had some really great conversations. There are a lot of wonderful and motivated young people in the world who want to do their part to serve others, and that is quite incredible.