A Church-run Holiday Camp for 50 Armenian Catholic Children and Young People in Russia
Once again this year 50 young people from the Armenian Catholic community of Venyov were able to take part in a youth summer camp. Children ages 9 to 17 were able to spend a week together with their friends, deepening their faith while also having a lot of fun in a beautiful holiday location.
Armenian Catholics make up only a small minority in their native country of Armenia, where they live among a population that is overwhelmingly Armenian Orthodox. In Russia, that is even more true: Armenian Catholics are only a tiny group. In this vast country, they have just four parishes, and it would be easy for the children to lose their Catholic identity. In the Church-run summer camps, they have an opportunity to share their language, their faith and their customs with other children, to learn more about the history of their Church and their homeland and become more deeply rooted in the life of their Church.
During the eight days of the camp they have daily Mass, and the program includes not only painting, dancing, singing and gymnastics, but also lessons in their own Armenian language, history and traditions. At the same time, the younger participants are helped to prepare for their First Holy Communion.
These summer camps have been held in previous years and have always been a huge success. Their parish priest, Father Sedrak Khitaryan writes, “The Church plays an immeasurably important role in the upbringing of these children and in the formation of their value system. Their religion forms the inner world of these children.”
He is delighted that these young people are able to receive spiritual nourishment during the summer camps, while at the same time relaxing, having fun and enjoying an unforgettable experience. The camps are organized with the help of young volunteers from the parish.
Without the help of ACN it would be impossible to fund and organize these events, and so this year once again we are helping with a contribution of $4,500, thanks to your generous support.
Aid to the Church in Need commits to invest your funds where they will have the greatest impact for the Church that we serve. Funds donated to Aid to the Church in Need’s projects will be used towards the greatest need in our programs to help keep the Faith alive.