Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. 1 Peter 3:8 NIV
Two of my favorite activities during the International Camporee are the Compassion Projects and the baptismal ceremony. These programs give meaning and purpose to the Camporee. Let’s begin with Compassion. Jesus lived a compassionate life. Compassion was an integral part of His ministry. He was compassion in the flesh. Everywhere He went He demonstrated a compassionate attitude toward others.
The word compassion means to suffer with and empathize with the one who suffers. Compassion is caring for the less fortunate who need a solution to their desperate situation. It is paying close attention to a person who has been disgraced and doing something to bring grace back to their life. Compassion is the response to the suffering of others with a sincere desire to help. Compassion motivates people to go out of their way to help those who hurt physically, spiritually, or emotionally. Compassion is being in direct contact with individuals in need in their environment. Compassion is preaching the Word through our actions.
The Bible calls us to show “mercy and compassion for one another.” (Zechariah 7:8-10, NIV). Jesus tells us in the Bible that there is a need to show compassion. “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore, pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest’” (Matthew 9:36-38, ESV).
Just as Jesus was known for living a compassionate life, we should be known by everyone around us for our acts of compassion. It’s God’s will for us to show compassion to one another. For this reason, during the International camporee 57 community projects will be available for thousands of Pathfinders who are willing to show compassion in Oshkosh Wisconsin. To register go to: www.compassionoshkosh.com. We really want to show that “Action speak louder than words.”
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. Mark 16:16 NIV
Wherever I go around the world, I always tell them, “If you don’t have baptism and Community service during your camporee don’t invite me.” Baptism is not the end, it is not the graduation for new members but is part of the discipleship process. I strongly believe that we need to be intentional with the process of discipleship including baptism. Baptism is like a great feast, a public declaration that God is still working in peoples’ heart. A public confession that God worth
following. This is why we are calling each club to bring candidates for the Oshkosh baptismal ceremony. Let’s have a grand celebration of the great things God has been doing through the Pathfinder ministry. I strongly believe the Pathfinder ministry is the largest school of discipleship in our church, and it’s growing daily with almost two million current members in over 180 countries.
Pathfinder ministry serves as a training school for many young people around the world in both Christian principles and life in general. At its core it’s a solid method of evangelism where young people can invite their friends to learn about Jesus and practical life skills. The Pathfinder ministry train young people to become leaders while pointing them Jesus. Spiritual growth is a natural result of the ministry.
We are making an appeal to all the Pastors and lay Pastors across NAD to support this ministry be intentional about having a club in each church. We also encourage the Pathfinders to become responsible members of their community, to be willing to take on challenges, to be team players, to develop leadership skills, and show compassion. We are a chosen generation, see you in Oshkosh!!!
For more information on registering candidates for baptism Click here
Andres Peralta is the World Pathfinder Director for the Seventh-day Adventist Church. He holds a DMin from the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary in Andrews University