Unification News for December 2003 and January 2004

North Carolina Youth Leadership Adventure Workshop

Bruce Hutcherson, NC Youth Minister
Nov 22~23, 2003 Winston-Salem, North Carolina


Takamitsu Sakauwa and I met at Hung Jin Nim’s Kodiak workshop a year ago. Now that he lives in North Carolina he wanted to do an adventure workshop for the NC teen BCs. He asked me to organize activities for an overnight camping trip for our first Leadership Adventure Workshop with the goal to embody Core Values though our experience in Nature. Saturday morning, November 22nd 2003, we all met at my house packed for a camping trip. Eight teens were able to come plus Takamitsu and myself.

After an orientation in my house by Takamitsu, we loaded into the vehicles and headed toward Pilot Mountain State Park with the goal to camp over-night on an island in the Yadkin River. We arrived at the Park and followed the gravel road is it wound through the woods and forded through a gravel and stone bottomed creek in several places. Takamitsu's car rides so low that it looked as if it would get stuck in the creeks water. We arrived at the river access parking and made the short hike down the hill with our gear. With only two canoes, ten people, a heavy, swift current and huge rocks lurking under their telling white caps, we felt challenged to cross this river to the island without flipping our gear laden canoes. To be safe, everyone wore life jackets and the gear was tied to the boat to prevent loss in case the current was pushed sideways on a submerged rock, rolling us in the water. The thought of pitching camp soaking wet in November, or trying to pull a swamped canoe and drifting gear out to the current of the Yadkin posed its thrill and threat. Each canoe would have to make three crossings to move the group and gear to the island - before dark. David and Derrick Dussek, the only other brother besides me and Takamitsu, worked hard to pull the canoes through the woods. The sisters all worked hard on the gear. Because of the good teamwork, the crossing went well, and after a brief prayer, we made camp as night approached. A three prong stag sped through the woods right by our camp as we prepared to pitch our tents. We had just enough daylight to make a short tour of the island. It was like the Swiss Family Robinson surveying their new paradise home. We all worked together to collect firewood and cook our spaghetti dinner. Derrick Dussek made a valiant effort to fish for catfish. Later Takamitsu taught core values and the teens planned their next days Sunday service as we all warmed our toes around the camp fire.

Waking at 5:00 am, we had Pledge and read HDK as we built up the fire in preparation for breakfast. As soon as the meal of scrambled eggs, bacon was done we packed up tents and gear and loaded the canoes for another trip across the river. By now we had our act together and in no time at all we were loading the van with the canoes strapped to the roof. Our next goal was Pilot Mountain.

Pilot Mountain is a rock topped mountain the foot hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. With its distinctive rock dome, it has guided the way for the Indians and pioneer of our past. After a picturesque hike along the base of the cliffs, we were to have a lesson in rappelling. Rappelling is an aspect in the sport of mountain climbing where one descends down a cliff or wall using a rope and harness. Even with all the safety procedures, it's tough to have the faith to go over the edge of a rock ledge, (in this case
a small rock ledge for training) and to trust our gear and support team. As our time ran out, we would have to finish on this practice run, but the results was shown on the faces of the participants as they were empowered with a new confidence and inner strength.

We finished our trip by returning back to Winston-Salem with the teens doing a fine job with Sunday Service with several families in attendance. I enjoyed Derrick's sermon with his summary of the trip and Kieva's testimony of trust on the river. The teens had to trust and depend on each other to succeed in each challenge as they built a closer
bonding, whether it was at the edge of a cliff or edge of a river.

Esther Spasi

I have to say "It was a really, really good experience for me" and I think I learned a lot of things. It was the first time for me hearing about the whole ‘Core Values’ – Culture. I tried to really focus on that during the workshop. Things I could accomplish are for example Responsibility, Initiative, Open-Mindedness, Energize and Conviction. Of course, there are a lot of things I could have done better, but I am going to work on the Core Values in the future.

Anyway!! It was great to share time with some BC’s I felt a good spirit and atmosphere all the time! The camping was adventurous in fact. It was not easy to sleep in a mini-tint with two others people. Also, it was cold. But I had to overcome my physical limits and my bad sides in order to ‘embody the core value through the nature’. It was a great inspiring + motivating time and I hope we can do this again!!! Thank you very much!

Tazuko Sugajima

The main goal of this workshop was to embody the Core Values in nature and learn to recognize them in our actions. Through the leader, I learned that in nature, we must first find the lessons God give us and then learn from it, which is different than just a teacher giving a lecture to a student.

One thing I really felt during the camping trip was to say positive and to pass the spirit to the other member. Everyone encouraged each other and helped out all through out the two days. I felt more energized and inspired to activity; most of us never tried it before including me and were a little unsure to try. But after one sister’s example people tried themselves and the rest of us cheered them on and helped out automatically. I felt that the Core Values are in our daily life and that we just don’t recognize it. The more we understand, the more we can see the Core Values we need to incorporate in our lives and become one step closer to being a better person. 

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