Camp Kabataan, a youth organization that conducts annual summer youth camps for young people ages 13 to 30 years old, in partnership with Breaking Point Foundation, Phil., Inc., a local-based NGO that aims to address the problem of drug abuse among young people, hosted another summer youth camp for this year 2015 entitled, “Divergent”. The title and theme of the youth camp, derived from the first of Veronica Roth’s bestseller trilogy, and now a major motion picture—aims to serve as a call for the youth of this generation to become “Divergent”; to become people who can and will stand against the downstream current of the world.
The summer youth camp was held last April 14 to 17 (Tuesday to Friday), at Mt. Peniel, Capas, Tarlac. It catered to 1002 campers, all from different places and walks of life. Upon arrival to the campsite, the campers were divided into 5 groups, or “factions” that represent the qualities essential to a person who wills to survive in this world.
The “Dauntless”, or the brave, represents the courage needed to face the trials in life by trusting God. The “Candor”, or the honest, represents the honesty, integrity, or the uprightness that each person must exercise to remain true to the desire to resist the temptations presented by the world. The “Amity”, or the kind, represents the kindness of heart that is desirable for people to remain at peace with each other. The “Abnegation”, or the selfless, represents the abandonment of selfish desires to serve God and those who are in need. And the “Erudite”, or the intelligent, represent the Biblical intelligence needed to choose and do what is right among all the choices presented to the person.
The challenge presented to each participant of the youth camp is to acquire and become what is represented by the factions, despite being placed and typified under just one group. They must become “Divergents,” who are brave, honest, kind, selfless, and intelligent enough to face the trials ahead of them with the grace of God.
For 4 days and 3 nights, the campers were exposed to the Word of God and to the good news that Jesus Christ has died for the whole world’s sins, that whoever chooses to believe in Him will have eternal life in Heaven with Him.
Six Large Group Sessions (LGS) filled with music, drama performances, games, and relevant teachings—which focused on the lives of four Bible characters found in the Book of Daniel of the Old Testament: Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego—were conducted to show that there is hope and a new life that can only be found in Jesus Christ.
Small Group Interactions (SGI) were held every morning for 3 days, with counselors facilitating discussions in the light of God’s Word about the topics presented in the preaching during the sessions. The campers were allowed to raise questions and discuss their own experiences in life. There were a total of 264 campers who professed their belief in and acceptance that Jesus Christ is the Lord and Savior of their lives, 112 who recommitted their lives to Christ, 83 who were baptized, and 5 who surrendered to missions.
All these were made possible by the grace of God, the hard work of all the volunteers, the faithful prayers and giving of the different churches that supported Camp Kabataan, and through the following sponsors: Purefoods Tender Juicy Hotdogs and Fun Nuggets, Magnolia, and San Miguel Food Corporation.
In this day and age, when the right is made wrong and the wrong is made right, when the righteous is the condemned and the corrupt is hailed to fame, when many families are broken and lives of the youth are damaged, the world needs people who can stand against the pressures around them. People who do not conform to the wrong patterns of the world. People who will serve as salt and light to the rest of the people. People who are brave, and honest, and kind, and selfless, and intelligent. People who are Divergent.