More than 800 Bolivian youth attend spiritual retreat during Carnaval
More than 800 young people from the El Alto Noroeste District in Bolivia gathered during the annual Carnaval, similar to Mardi Gras traditions in America, held 18-21 February. While the streets in the city of El Alto were filled with drunkenness and parties, these youth were seeking the presence of God.
According to district NYI coordinator Leonel Limachi, the tradition of holding these camps during Carnaval began in 2005.
“We want young people on those days to be more filled with the Holy Spirit and learn more about the Word through socio-biblical games, conferences, and preaching, and to be away from the parties that occur in Carnaval,” said Limachi.
With the motto "Holiness: My Nazarene legacy," three camps were held in total, organized by the district's zones. One of the zones went to the highlands, another to Yungas, and the last to the city of Cochabamba.
Praise and worship were key components of the camps. In addition, there was time for games and recreational activities. The youth enjoyed outdoor sports and creative activities, but the camps' focus was the Bible.
The youth met in several Bible study sessions, where different topics related to our denomination were explored. The speakers focused on profound teachings that challenged listeners to improve their relationship with God and to follow Christ. Attendees were also given a study book on the topic of Nazarene Identity.
Ultimately, the camps were a big hit, and students enjoyed the opportunity to distance themselves from the lifestyles and distractions on public display during the Carnaval celebrations.
“Not only were they able to enjoy the company of other young Christians, but they also had the opportunity to deepen their faith and learn more about their relationship with God,” Limachi said.“