Shining for Jesus!
Posted by Gary O’Rourke, 16 November 2020
The Big House Ireland is a Christian charity that exists to help young people know God’s love, especially when they are dealing with difficult life situations. Katherine Dickson said
We believe that young people are precious, valued and deeply loved by God, regardless of who they are, where they are from, or whatever difficulty they may be facing. We want young people to know that they are not alone in difficult situations and that there is no difficult day, no dark experience that God cannot bring hope and life into
The Big House provide counselling, camps & weekends, youth group sessions and training for leaders. The camps and weekends are designed around the needs of young people and seek to respond to their experience of difficult life situations. Whether it’s a long–term illness, a family difficulty, or a personal issue, Big House camps aim to help young people encounter Jesus in the midst of their difficulties and grow in their knowledge of God’s love and care.
- A safe, non stereotypical, welcoming residential setting for young people with additional needs (as well as their siblings and youth leaders) where they can connect with others, whilst hearing the message of the gospel in relevant, engaging and creative ways
- Vibrant, and accessible spaces where young people are encouraged to spend time with their Heavenly Father, and have the opportunity to pray on their own or with the help of a mentor.
- A place of joy and fun, where young people are able to try new activities and discover independence in areas where they normally wouldn’t have the opportunity to do so.
- An opportunity to be away from home for the first time, pastorally and physically supported by an inter–generational team of volunteers (fully trained) who have a heart for sharing the joy of Christ with others; regardless of age, culture, illness or special educational need.
As you read this it will not surprise you that in 2020 the Shine camp was not able to go ahead due to COVID–19 restrictions. However, The Big House did stay connected with the campers by posting activity kits which included a bible–based activity, craft, links to worship songs and lots of sweets!
In December, the campers usually attend an annual reunion. This year they are planning to meet on Zoom, with the theme ‘The Greatest Gift’ and plans are underway to share copies of the Accessible Bible: New Testament. Katherine said
This Christmas, we are especially thankful to Biblica for their generous donation, allowing us to celebrate The Good News of the gospel. Through Biblica’s donation, each of our campers will literally receive the gift of good news this Christmas, AND have the opportunity to gift a copy of the Accessible Bible: New Testament to a friend or loved one
Some of the campers do not communicate verbally, so gifting a bible enables them to “shine” as they share the good news of Jesus with others.
At Biblica we are delighted, humbled and greatly blessed knowing that these special campers will be shining for Jesus!
Katherine said “Our SHINE campers will be beacons of hope as demonstrated in Romans 10:15 “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”” (NIrV)