Hello dear friends and partners,

Here’s some update from August. There’s a lot going on right now, and even more coming very soon, so I have just a few minutes to compose an update for you. Please excuse me if it is too brief.

The most important news – we just had our summer men’s camp in Teriberka, Russia. We have been doing this camp since 2011, so this one was 7th, and 5th in this particular location, which we discovered in 2013. We do it right on the sea shore, 20 kilometres (~13 miles) away from any civilisation. A half of this distance is rough road, and another half is a 3 hour walk through rocky tundra.

The place is desolate and exposed to harsh winds from the Arctic Ocean. But it is beautiful. Indeed. All previous years the Lord had mercy on us, and the weather was always good.

This year was different. Rain started at the moment we left the cars at the end of the rocky road. Rain was not our only problem. We wanted to hire a boat to carry heavy equipment to our harbour. In order to do so, I found a man with a boat who lived in Teriberka and he agreed to carry our stuff and to be there with us during the camp for certain amount of money. But when we came there, he said that the boat was not available anymore. And we failed to find someone else because of the weather.

So we had to carry everything on our backs: Two 60 square meter tarps, a chain saw with fuel and oil, a small rubber boat, two rifles, innumerable charges for them, heavy pots, canned beef and other stuff. I was really worried about how it all will work out. We had three men from Moscow, who did have some outdoor experience, but nothing close to that.

We had a bunch of teenagers from Saint Petersburg, who didn’t have even slightest idea what they were about to face. Three musicians from Saint Petersburg, well, you understand… But this was the experience which made this camp priceless.

I saw guys completely done in, unable to carry their loads anymore. I saw other guys taking their loads on their backs and others volunteered to help them. I saw guys helping each other to get up and keep walking, encouraging each other and joking with each other. All this under heavy rain and harsh North wind from the Arctic ocean, which never stopped till next day’s afternoon.

When we arrived in our harbour a few hours later, everybody was absolutely wet and cold. Literally, soaking wet. Even underwear, everything. Including spare clothes and sleeping bags in the packs of some guys. We all stuffed into a tiny old fisherman’s cabin, abandoned and half-destroyed by the weather. And this is when another priceless moment came.

We, men, realized, that we couldn’t stay there. We had to go outside, into the rain and wind, and pitch the tarps, chop firewood, pitch the tents and prepare food. We can’t change clothes right now. We have to keep our wet clothes on and go to work. An we went. Four of us did.

It all looked so impossible. No trees. But we needed to set up the tarp. We had to carry logs from the sea, fix them with the ropes, put the tarp on top, wind trying to tear it and take it away.

It took 5 hour for us to do it.

But in the end, we had tarp with fire under it and logs to sit on. We had tents pitched for everybody. And just a little later we had food prepared for everybody. Yes, we four were absolutely done. But the work was completed. Finally, at midnight, we were able to change our soak and wet clothes and have dinner. The cabin was used as drying room for clothes and gear.

The next day we started later then planned. Everybody was just exhausted. The rain continued for a few more hours and stopped. Our classes stared only at noon. We were talking about confusion of manhood, about men’s wounds, about friendship, about mentors and accountability. That was the day focused on our past. The next day the classes continued. Now we talked about Biblical definition of manhood. We compared Jesus and Adam, we dig deep in the the book of Genesis looking for the original blueprints of manhood.

In the afternoon we had a lot of fun. We shot guns, we wrestled, we fished, in the end we made a big fire on the beach and went bathing into the sea. The water temperature was about 6 Celsius (app 43 Fahr). That has already become a good tradition. Later at night we had prayer time – prayed individually for any man who sat on the log in the middle.

Early in the afternoon on Sunday, the fourth day of our camp, we started back.

The camp was unique – a great level of collaboration and interaction between the participants who barely knew each other before. Some had even never met. A lot of prayer and message. A lot of fun. A lot of haddock and flounder. That was a blessed time for all of us.

The guys from Moscow and St Pete are going to come again next year and to bring more men with them. We’ll see. But what I know now – I need to start preparing the next camp NOW.

Please pray for more men in the team. The guys, who will take responsibility and catch up the vision.

Blessings to you all, friends. Thank you for being here. Thank you for your prayers and financial support. I appreciate you.


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