Mission trip an eye opener to the youths

A mission trip to Pensiangan was held for an English Camp in Sk Pekan Pensiangan k9 led by Lawrence Thien June 14-21.

Jul 12, 2019

By Frederica Jepoin and Dymphna Ludovicus
A mission trip to Pensiangan was held for an English Camp in Sk Pekan Pensiangan k9 led by Lawrence Thien June 14-21.

The team members were from St Mary’s Secondary School Sandakan. They included Lawrence, five volunteers, four from PNG (Preparing for Next Generation) team, Sr Dorothy and seven youths (Six from University of Technology Malaysia also from the Malacca Johore Diocese and one from SEGi University).

The purpose of the programme was to encourage the students to speak English. Pensiangan is a challenging place as it is located in the interior of Sabah. There is a WIFI connection at the clinic and school but only at night until 5.00am. The experience taught the youth to be humble about life as they adapted to village life.

 There were a lot of English language activities to boost the children’s skill. Activities such as reading, poetry recital, drama/ mime, spelling bee, show and tell, storytelling, public speaking, crossword puzzles and action songs were incorporated with the cooperation of the school’s teachers. This encouraged the students to participate in the English-based activities and also increased their level of confidence to compete among themselves.

The youth from the team were given a chance to voice their thoughts on what inspired them the most and how special things can motivate them. One student shared her thoughts of not wanting to take the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia examination because she did not have the confidence to pursue her studies to the higher level. She felt that the life she is living right now was already more than enough. The confession of other students opened the eyes and hearts of the youth to further motivate them about the importance of education in their life.

During the free time, the youths helped Sr Dorothy in the kindergarten to teach the children there. It was a good opportunity for the youth to help the children as they are the future of the new generation in Pensiangan. The youth were also able to teach the older villagers who wanted to learn to speak English. In that way, the villagers can communicate with all the visitors that came to Pensiangan.

The PNG team had the opportunity to share their ideas of Jesus Christ during a Sunday school session. There were activities that enabled the children to learn about the good deeds that should be practised by Christians. By the end of the mission trip, everyone in the team had decided to become more giving towards others and help the needy as the command from Hebrews 13:16 says ‘do not forget to do good and to share with others; for with such sacrifices God is pleased’. The presence of God throughout the journey had motivated them to keep on going until the last day of the mission trip. Even though the group consisted of people from different denominations, they felt that the love that God has given to them is equal. The sacrifices of the volunteers to help others impressed the youth, giving them a good example to become much better persons who know how to help others in the future.

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