By Chantal, Summer Intern at St. James Town
When I mention TLC, I don’t mean the girl group, TV network, or tender loving care, but Teens Leading Communities! This summer in St. James Town, we have the privilege of having 10 dedicated teenagers, who live within the neighbourhood, working for Sonshine Day Camp. For some of them, this was an entirely new experience. Watching them receive the orange camp shirts with 'STAFF' written on the back was a huge moment that they were excited to take on. For others, they are returning TLCs, ready to grow in many aspects the role of a TLC challenges them to be or do. Whether they are a new or returning TLC, I can empathize with them because I am a former TLC who went through the same training they received. Some of them had doubts and fears coming into this summer, but with the constant reminders that all the leaders were there to support each other and that God’s plan and timing is perfect, they were reassured that camp would run smoothly.
As a TLC, they have the responsibilities of: leading worship; 1 hour of activities; being extra hands for the staff, interns, and mission teams; and setting an example of being a child of God for the children. This year, during our training at site, we set aside one day for the TLCs to plan out all the worship songs and activities they were going to do throughout the whole summer. I was beyond impressed and proud that they were able to thoroughly plan and complete all their activities with plenty of time to spare for the rest of the day. The teens have also elevated worship by having some sessions that aren’t just singing and dancing, but a time of reflection on who God is through the songs.
To say that I’m appreciative of the TLCs for all the work they have done, is merely not enough. I have seen some of these TLCs grow from when they were campers to who they are now, and I am very proud of them. Many of the TLCs have developed their leadership skills by disciplining the kids in a loving way and teaching them about Jesus outside of small group Bible time. I can see that the teens have a passion for continuing to grow in their faith, which pours onto the kids. I believe that God has placed every single TLC into TCM’s programs to build up and bring glory to His kingdom. They are a huge encouragement to me as I continue to grow in my own faith and build relationships with kids in St. James Town. My hope is that the TLCs confidently share and demonstrate God’s word outside of Sonshine.
"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness." (Colossians 2:6-7)
Chantal is no stranger to St. James Town. As a former TLC and summer intern, she is actively strengthening and building relationships with the community members!