By David Turner, WHMGTV
Photos By Michelle Simpson, WHMGTV
With most students in the New York area on Spring Break, hundreds of youth descended on the Bethesda Healing Center to kick-off Boot Camp 2011. Advertised as The Ultimate Spring Break Youth Conference – Dickson Guillaume Ministries again has put together a power packed assault on the city of Brooklyn. This year’s theme- Above The Ashes! The evening got on the way with Praise and Worship leader Jason Hendrickson setting the atmosphere with songs that included Chasing after you and The Blood. Youthful worshipers donned their garments of praise and prepared their hearts for the spoken word from Pastor Donnie Mc Clurkin. There was still so much more in store before he would eventually bring his message for the night. Conference organizer, Minister Dickson Guillaume spent some time welcoming and encouraging the youths to be prepared to follow Jesus, put away childish pursuits and get ready to rise Above The Ashes. Christian fraternity Alpha Nu Omega stepped to the beat presenting Jesus in their own unique rhythmic style. Brooklyn based artist Marcus Aaron with Tru Praise and Jules Bartholomew with JudaCamp led the congregation in high praise that had the youth jumping out of their seats, lifting their hands and voices in adoration to God.
By the time Pastor Donnie took the mic it was evident that lives would be changed and Boot Camp 2011 would be like no other. For almost ninety minutes, he passionately pleaded with these young soldiers to stop the mess- understand that the enemy has been waging war against the people of God and as youth, they need to stand! This was by no means a sermon, instead he laid bare his personal failings as he attempted to navigate life’s trials, falling prey to the devices and traps placed to ensnare him and keep him from the kingdom of God. Sexting, bullying, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism are issues facing God’s youth and we cannot be defeated. It was easy for Pastor Mc Clurkin to reach these youth and walking into the crowd sitting in the midst of them, ensured that they knew he feels and knows their challenges. The biggest trap we fall into is to be in the enemy’s camp while praising God- hypocrisy. It was past 11:00 pm when hundreds rushed to the front with tears streaming down their faces, for they were tired of the lies and nonsense that had held them captive. Many hearts had surrendered to God.
The night was brought to a close with euphoric rejoicing as JudaCamp performed their hit single Dance. An awesome start to a week intended to present to ‘battle ready youth’ a strategic mission-plan which fortifies and trains them to win this war for the Kingdom- Boot Camp 2011!