This is Freedom

February 29, 2024

This is Freedom

Calvary Youth Camp 2023

  • Article by Yuen Tze Svenn

The main goal of the Youth camp was to provide a nurturing space for young individuals to establish a connection with God, discover a sense of belonging, and explore the freedom offered through Christ. The theme, "This is Freedom", derived from Galatians 5:1, served as a guiding light for the camp's purpose.

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A total of 185 enthusiastic campers participated in the 2023 Youth Camp held at the Grand Kampar Hotel in Perak from Monday to Thursday, 18 to 21 December 2023.


The transformative journey commenced at the Calvary Convention Centre on Monday morning. The committee fostered a warm welcoming atmosphere, managing registrations, and distributing welcome packages to the campers.


The campers enthusiastically mingled, many eager for their first Youth Camp experience! Before boarding our buses, Associate Pastor Peter Ong led a brief prayer for the youth at the plaza.


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Camp rules briefing by Camp Coordinator, Chelsea Chin

"Freedom is the ability to obey God and choose His will for our lives"

During our first night session, our youth pastor, Pastor Michael Loon, delivered a convicting message about resisting the drift. He emphasized, “Freedom is the ability to obey God and choose His will for our lives”, and reiterated, “Freedom cannot exist apart from God”.


Lim Fang Pin, a camper, shared:

“I was moved by the sharing and the overwhelming presence of the Holy Spirit. Pastor Michael broke down what the gospel means, which renewed my perspective on my purpose and what Christ did for me. When he shared about Adam and Eve losing their freedom in Genesis, it spoke to me. He also highlighted the signs of drifting, which convicted me and opened my eyes to the areas where I fall short of God's glory. Now, I’m inspired to fight my drift by being disciplined spiritually.”


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 Pastor Michael Loon sharing on the first night



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Youth lifting their hands in worship to praise God on the first night


Our daily morning devotions were led by Isaac Gan, Andrew Yem, and Tabitha Ong. The campers were assigned into small groups based on their ages. These sessions aimed to inspire and foster a strong sense of bonding among peers.


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 Campers engaged in discussion after morning devotions


In the afternoon, diverse activities filled the camp, fostering collaboration and teamwork among the campers. Station games, escape rooms, and treasure hunts were among the exciting activities. Remarkably, despite the inherently competitive nature of the games, genuine friendships naturally blossomed among the campers, extending beyond the organized activities.

The youths having fun with the station games

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On the second night, Associate Pastor Raymond Yong delved into the insightful theme of breaking free and how to liberate ourselves from bondage and chains with interactive examples. He stressed that “the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a significant and transformative experience for Christians”. His insights added more depth and spiritual significance to the camp experience.


Camper Carissa Isaac shared:

“Pastor Raymond was preaching about the Holy Spirit and how important our faith should be. Many people were touched by his message, including me. Being one of the young facilitators for the cell groups, I especially felt touched when I saw others who took their step of faith, went to the altar on the night of the service, and received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. God was moving throughout camp. I praise and thank God that we finally know what true freedom is through Christ. It was amazing!”


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Youths worshipping on the second night


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Pastor Raymond preaching and praying for a camper

“The individuals who are most happy are those who know their purpose in life”.

In our final night session, Pastor Michael delivered an engaging message on our identity in Christ. He stated, “the individuals who are most happy are those who know their purpose in life” and “the only way you can break free from yourself is to know your identity”.


He shared “I am who I am because the I Am tells me who I am”, assuring us that God’s true view of us never changes. His teachings instilled a deeper  understanding of one's identity in Christ and the transformative impact it can have on our lives.

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Youths in worship and leaders praying for the youth through a "prayer tunnel"


All our sessions were intensely filled with worship, anointed by the Holy Spirit, accompanied by impactful messages, and culminated with powerful prayer sessions.


Numerous campers openly testified about their divine encounters, expressing how they felt God's touch and presence, which significantly strengthened their faith. There were several individuals who chose to remain at the altar, basking in His presence even after the formal session had concluded. Accompanied by the attentive leaders providing prayer support, this created a sacred and transformative atmosphere during and after the sessions.


Praise God! Thirty-four youths received the baptism of the Holy Spirit and spoke in tongues for the first time! We also had four youths who accepted Christ and 21 who rededicated their lives! Additionally, 14 youths responded to God's call for full-time ministry!

"I felt God's tremendous love for me like never before".

Another camper, Natasha Tan, joyfully testified : 


“I felt God’s tremendous love for me like never before. I’d go to the altar every night and cry my heart out to the Lord, surrendering everything to Him. I also received the gift of the Holy Spirit during the altar call! All the weight and burdens were no longer holding me back. I felt a freedom I never once knew I had because God had broken those chains. Now, I’ve seen so many small, little, changes in my life. I’ve started praying and talking to God more, I developed an actual interest in getting to know God more by reading His word, and I’m trying my best to be more like Him each day as I grow. Youth camp was a wake-up call for me, to stop drifting away from God, and a reminder that He has and will always be there for us, no matter what happens.”


"Now, I've seen so many small, little, changes in my life.  I've started praying and talking to God more ..."

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"Angel store" for campers to bless and write notes to one another


We are immensely grateful to God for His unending love, protection, and provision throughout the entire duration of the camp. Calvary Youth Camp 2023 was truly a transformative journey of freedom. For many, this is the beginning of their journey together as brothers and sisters in Christ. May the moments and lessons experienced along with the spiritual awakening during the camp enrich our relationship with Christ, resonate in our hearts, and inspire us in our ongoing journey with the Lord.


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Pastors, camp committee, chaperones and helpers


We would also like to appreciate the dedicated efforts of the committee and helpers, following God’s guidance, in making the camp a success. 


All glory unto God!