West-Central Africa Division

More than 100 Baptisms Highlight Regional Pathfinder Camporee in West Africa

Event in Ghana drew thousands of young Seventh-day Adventists for a week of fellowship and training.

Solace Asafo, Abraham Bakari, West-Central Africa Division, and Adventist Review
Baptismal ceremony at the end of the 2023 West-Central Africa Division Pathfinder Camporee in Accra, Ghana, on December 30. [Photo: West-Central Africa Division News]

Baptismal ceremony at the end of the 2023 West-Central Africa Division Pathfinder Camporee in Accra, Ghana, on December 30. [Photo: West-Central Africa Division News]

The West-Central Africa Division (WAD) Dream Pathfinder Camporee 2023, held at the Valley View University campus in Accra, Ghana, closed with a spiritually uplifting service on Sabbath, December 30. Thousands of Pathfinders and their leaders gathered in a serene, natural setting to witness what leaders described as a significant spiritual milestone: the baptism of more than 100 attendees who committed their lives to Jesus.

Under sunny skies on the final day, Pathfinders and their leaders enjoyed the shade of the trees as they listened to a youth orchestra playing African tunes and rhythms. Busi Khumalo, General Conference Youth Ministries director, delivered the spiritual message during the Sabbath worship service. Khumalo spoke about the unique yet unified global nature of the Pathfinder ministry, drawing inspiration from Genesis 46–48. He explored the diverse practices within the ministry, emphasizing its international reach and its role in preparing individuals for heaven, “our ultimate destination.”

Drawing parallels to Joseph’s life and his family’s journey to Egypt, Khumalo reminded attendees that, like the nation of Egypt in Genesis, this earth is not our final home. He spoke of the transient nature of earthly institutions, including the Bible and Pathfinder clubs, and their role in preparing people for heaven.

The story of Jacob blessing his sons Manasseh and Ephraim served as a poignant metaphor, illustrating God’s ability to invert the status quo and fulfill His plan in unexpected ways, Khumalo said. “I encourage you to appreciate your journey with God. Joseph was transformed from being a nobody to becoming someone under divine guidance.”

Alfred Asiem, WAD Youth director, highlighted what he called “a notable achievement” of the camporee: the baptism of more than 100 Pathfinders. He expressed joy at having the privilege of baptizing his own daughter during the event. This massive baptism marked a historic first for the camporee, leaders said, as it was a reflection of a strong focus on mission and spiritual growth across the region.

Khumalo commended WAD youth leaders for their mission-focused approach, noting that the activities and presentations at the camporee emphasized the commitment of young people to the church’s mission.

Attendees shared their positive experiences. John, from Liberia, described the camporee as a blend of fun activities, new friendships, and high-quality time with God.

Looking forward, leaders of Youth Ministries in the WAD are already planning the Pan African Youth Congress at Babcock University in Nigeria in December 2024, which is expected to be a gathering of people from the entire African continent. For the Pathfinders, the next camporee is scheduled for 2027 at Adeleke University in Nigeria, leaders said.

The 2023 event concluded with participants departing the campus on Sunday, December 31. According to leaders, as attendees returned to their home churches, they carried with them the memories and spiritual lessons of what they described as “an enriching experience.”

The original version of this story was posted on the Adventist Review website.

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