First FC(C) Youth Camp in Spain
In August 2017, believers from Spain, France, Ireland and Scotland attended the annual FC(C) conference in Spain. As well as the conference, the first ever youth camp took place the following week. This year, the conference was held in Espinosa de los Monteros, a town located at the northern tip of the Castilla y León region. Set in the heart of the Cantabrian Mountains, it gave us the chance to have fellowship together in a beautiful environment.
Rev Timothy McGlynn was our speaker. He gave us a series of talks regarding “The Fruit of the Spirit” – Galatians 5:22-23. He spoke about these different attributes in three groups – love, peace and joy… longsuffering, gentleness, goodness… faith, meekness, temperance. These talks were informative and thought-provoking, causing us to reflect on the responsibility we have to show God’s love through our conduct towards others. Mr McGlynn spoke metaphorically about the difference between the terrain in the north and the south of Spain – with the greenery of the north mirroring a Christian with a fruitful spiritual life, while the desert landscape of the south portrayed a dry spiritual life. We learned that a faithful walk with God is the only way to maintain a strong presence of the Spirit in our hearts.
Hugues Pierre and family from France
Between the talks, we had the opportunity to get to know each other while we took in the scenery around us. Espinosa is an area unspoilt by tourism, so it was great to have an insight into the traditional Spanish way of life. The town comes to life when the weekly market takes place, where we got the opportunity to purchase souvenirs to take home. We also spent a lot of time in the water, whether it was in the pool or at the river… this was welcome relief for those of us not used to the heat! After a wonderful few days in Espinosa, we moved on to the nearby town of Soncillo for the remainder of our stay. We were joined here by the Isaac Berrocal Cordoncillo, who hopes to finish his studies for the ministry early next year. He had one of his six children with him. One of the highlights of our time in Soncillo was a trip to the spectacular Ojo de Guareña caves, of which we were given a guided tour. The rich history behind the caves was evident, with cave art covering the inside walls. The church which was built into the rock was particularly striking, and made for a brilliant photograph! Our visit here was an incredible experience which will live long in our memories.
We are very thankful to Rev Jorge and Michaela Ruiz for organising the camp and for their kindness to us during our time in Spain. Mr Ruiz acted as our taxi driver, ferrying us to and from the camp to the airports. Thank you also to Rev Bill Scott for being the link between us and the congregation in Spain, to Rev's McGlynn and Cordoncillo for their encouraging talks, and to Mrs McGlynn for keeping us right! Despite the language barriers at the camp, our faith in God was greater than anything that separated us. We are thankful to Him for the many blessings we shared, and for His protection over us throughout the course of the week.
Ojo de Guarena Cave