Summer Plans

A lot has happened since February.  Throughout the last three months I have finished up my Girls Bible study group for the summer, went on my second Calbreak trip, finished up all the assignments for my Credentialing process at Youth For Christ and experienced the first Executive Director change at YFC in 21 years.  There have been many ups and downs, but I am thankful for the chance to work where I do, and constantly am amazed at the way God works.  

Looking forward to the summer months the staff team here are heading to the YFC National Conference in Winnipeg at the end of June.  I will also be helping out with the summer Drop In program we run Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s and Thursday’s. We will give the kids two meals week and provide fun programming for them to be apart of throughout the summer!  I also have the privilege of working with our two summer workers and a few of my other co-workers on some much needed “spring” cleaning. As the summer progressed I will be sure to keep you in the loop on my life and ministry here at Youth For Christ! :) 

Please pray that God would continue to help me make new connections with people and that I would have a heart that is open and willing to be bold in the conversations I am having with the youth and supporters I meet!

Unconditional Love

I can't believe February is half over! The past few weeks have been flown by. Recently I have been meeting with a number of girls who are feeling down and under the weather.  I can completely understand, this time of year is tough for most young girls.  Valentines day.  Hearts, red and pink, couples being all couplely, it seems to be everywhere you go.  Culture and society are sending the message to these girls that if they aren't in a relationship or if their boyfriend doesn't go to the moon and back for them that they aren't loved and have no value.  For women in general it is tough when the enemy keeps telling us that without a relationship or a husband or boyfriend that does whatever you ask, you are worthless.  This lie needs to be trumped with God's truth.  His love is unconditional, that means He loves you all the time whether you are single, in a relationship, married, engaged, etc, etc.  As I talk with numerous girls about relationships, wanting to take their own life or countless mental health issues, I am reminded of why God has me here during this season.  I know what it's like to have no where to turn but to Christ, and I want these girls to know that no matter what they are going through God loves them.  In my Bible study group on Wednesday nights we have been focusing on Identity and God's unconditional love.  As we meet if you would pray alongside me, pray that God can capture the hearts of these girls.  Pray that their identity and value would be found in Christ's truth about who they are and not what society and culture is telling them.

This video is one I showed the girls a few weeks ago, I pray that this concept of unconditional love roots itself deeply in your hearts today.  No matter where you are, or what your circumstance is, God loves you so deeply!

Ministry Update

Moving from fall to winter has not only been unpredictable weather wise but also in my journey with Youth For Christ. There has been so much going on from training in Banff, to our Annual Fundraising Banquet, to starting up a girls group on Wednesday nights, numerous coffee appointments with youth, support meetings and helping run the Drop In program.  All of these areas are so different and each have their challenges.  Some of the kids at Drop In have been experiencing a rough time in school, especially with bullying, along with one of my small group girls has had a really challenging time adjusting to life in Grade 10.  It is so tough to see these kids, whom we love so much, enter into these transitional years.  Really we can't force them to understand that life after high school is a thing, but we can listen, pray and offer advice when asked about how we would handle the situation. So please pray for these youth as they make choices and experience the pressures of high school and for wisdom as they seek advice and council from me.

I have been working here for close to a year and a half and I am still not fully funded. Obviously there are questions in my mind of how I can do better in meeting with people and sharing my vision and passion for youth with them. There is also questions of what to do moving forward.  I really need prayer for my support level, and wisdom for how to go about catching up my support account.  God has obviously called me here and I know that, even when worry and doubt sneak in, God is good and I want his will to be done!  I was recently reminded that God is the one who runs Youth For Christ, not me or any of my co-coworkers but Our Heavenly Father.  Really God does not need us to do His work, but he did choose us to be apart of these kids lives and I want to serve them and Christ with excellence, passion and enthusiasm for the gospel.

Thanks for your prayers!

Summer Recap!

This is the first summer in 8 years I have not worked at Ranger Lake Bible Camp. I have missed my camp family, but know that serving at YFC is where I needed to be this summer. Over the course of the summer I have been helping out with the Drop In and working on raising support.  Although my schedule was not as full as the camp life, I have had my fair share of stressful situations during my summer.  Unfortunately, I have had numerous struggles with my health and haven’t had the energy I normally have.  People who know me well, know that it is tough for me to not be doing something, but I have had to learn to take it easy this summer. With that being said I do need a lot of prayer going into the busier fall months, prayer for energy and deep desire for the ministry here at YFC.  I also need to gain more supporters.  I have been blessed by many friends and family who have come onto my support team in the past month, but I need to at least triple the support I have now to catch up with what I need monthly.  This journey has been long and somedays the opportunities to meet with people seem less and less, but if you could pray that I would be able to get more people to come on board with my ministry partner team that would be great!  I have had a few troubles with a few boys at the Drop In, which has been frustrating.  Because I am white and female it is hard for me to have authority over them.  So if you could also pray as I continue to serve with the Drop In that they would respect me and know that I don’t treat them any differently because they are not white! I really want to show them God’s love so that they can know it too!

With all the discouragement's aside, I truly have seen God working in great ways this summer.  We had one of the boys get Baptized a week ago, and a few more are getting baptized on September 11th at Carpenter’s Church. I have also had three people sign up to support me monthly in the past week as well!  In regards to my health, I have hopefully found a family doctorwho can help advocate for me to my Thyroid doctor! I am looking forward to the fall when our regular programs begin! 

Busy Busy!

These past few months have been jam packed with lots of awesome stuff.  At the end of March, beginning of April was Calbreak! This was my first time on the trip and it changed my life!  I love a number of things about the trip but two of my favourite parts would have to be one hanging out with a bunch of really awesome people and seeing the change happen in kids hearts. There is something so unique about this trip that I can’t really explain in words.  We took 93 youth with us this year and a lot of them had Aha moments that led to them coming to know Christ as their Lord and Saviour! I personally got to experience this change in a few of my small group girls and I can’t wait to go on the trip next year! (I also can’t wait to go to Disneyland for the second time :)) 

Another really great opportunity I had was to attend YFC Canada’s Summer Institute at the end of May.  We spent one week at Redeemer College in Ancaster, ON.  I learned a lot of really valuable information about YFC and about youth culture.  I also got the chance to go to a Toronto Blue Jays game and Niagara Falls for the first time ever!  Here i made some really great friendships and I can’t wait to see how God will use this training in my life!
 

Please continue to pray for my financial support.  This summer I will be working on meeting with people and trying in increase my monthly partners. Pray that I would be connected with the right people and that God would open up a lot of opportunities to meet! 

Ministry Update!

Two weeks ago we had the opportunity to go up to Turnor Lake and La Loche area to host a Gymblast and a dance for the Youth in the area.  Although it was not what we expected and there were a lot less kids than we had hoped, we were able to build connections with the community kids and families in Turnor Lake.  We all felt called to drive up there, and are hopeful that a good connection will come in the future from the Northern Communities of Saskatchewan.
Life is full, we are averaging three Gymblasts a week with d4, Drop In, YFCHL and California Breakaway in three weeks, but God is good.  He is faithful to provide for our needs and I trust that God will sustain myself and the rest of the staff as we continue to trust Him in this busy time!

Christmas Reflection

My time here at Youth For Christ has been going great.  I have been learning so much.  I have been challenged, stretched and encouraged during the first half of my internship. One highlight throughout the month of December was having the Drop In kids at the building for a turkey dinner.  Who knows if any of these kids had a traditional Christmas dinner at home but seeing the smiles and excitement on the kids faces was a highlight throughout the holiday season for sure!  My prayer is that they caught a glimpse of the true meaning of Christmas throughout the night.  We finished off the night giving the kids treat bags and socks! As we start up Drop In in 2016 pray that the connections that were made before the holidays would stir up questions in the kids hearts as the come to our programs this year!

Building Relationships!

I am loving my time here at Youth for Christ!  I have been gaining great connections with youth in Saskatoon!  Recently, we had a d-group hangout night with my d-group from DimensionFour.  I took five girls to Apex, the trampoline park, on the North end of the city.  Before taking them here I was having trouble connecting with the girls, honestly I think it had to do with the fact that the girls didn’t really know me very well.  At Apex we had a lot of fun, took some selfies and sang along to music in the van.  This was a turning point for me from that point on, in discussion times the girls listened and truly wanted to hear what we were saying.  The next time we met the girls had a lot of questions and comments on the discussion topic for the night, how our speech can be toxic and leave a lasting impression on our heart and mind. We talked about how what people have said about us can really begin to define who we are, according to the world’s standard.  I shared how I believe my identity comes from my belief and relationship with Christ.  Therefore the standard I hold up to what others say about me is within the Word of God.  We talked about Psalm 139:14, the girls loved the fact that God knew them before they were born and that they have been fearfully and wonderfully made.  This has been a huge feat to overcome in my own life, that my value and identity does not come from what others say about me, but what God has laid out in scripture. Sharing this journey with the girls in my group was very powerful.  These girls have been told their whole lives by their parents, by guys, and other girls that they don’t meet the standards the world has laid out for them.  A challenge I laid out for them was if they choose to believe in Jesus and his amazing work, they too, can hold themselves to a higher standard, that they no longer live according the power of the world but to what God says about them.  One of the girls looked like she was going to cry the whole time.  Who knows what she has been told her whole life but obviously the Holy Spirit was at work!  I can’t wait to see how God will use this conversation to bring glory to His name in the future.  I am thankful God has placed me here and given me this opportunity to share words of truth into these girls lives!  Please pray that I will have many more opportunities like this one to share truth and love into these girls lives.  

I Love My Job!

I LOVE MY JOB!

I love working with youth. There have been ups and downs here but God is in control and I trust him with my life. The song “This is Amazing Grace” has been a song that has been filling my life with truth, that through the chaos he brings it all back into order.  That even on my weak days, he is strong and his amazing grace will always sustain me all my days.

There is much going on!

This past week was tough because I found out that I have Grave’s Disease in my Thyroid.  It could really be a lot worse so I am grateful that the Lord is in control and that even though I am sick that he still loves me and cares for me! 
The first week in October, we had a staff retreat at Emma Lake.  This was really beautiful and very productive. We had a wonderful time of bonding over fires, food and fellowship! Then the next weekend, I led worship at Camp Kadesh for their Mother Daughter Retreat.  This was not directly related to my job but I ended up convincing a few girls to look into our California Breakaway trip in April.  It was awesome to hang out with a few people I knew there and be at Camp Kadesh again!  It is so beautiful there, I got to see the Northern lights on both lake trips!  The following week I led a tie dye event at the YFC Building.  Only one girl came but we had great conversations and it was fun to build a trusting relationship with her. Last week, I had a girl come work with me for most of the day during the grade 9, take your kid to work day.  We had a lot of fun hanging out.  We painted, we tie dyed, did some shopping and of course, had Cranberry Sprite!
This week I will do something fun with my D-Group, either or to Apex or somewhere else fun with my girls!

Thanks again for all your prayers and support of my ministry here. I am looking forward to becoming even more settled and continuing to build relationships with the youth I encounter. 

Blessings
Carmen Pahl

Ministry Update

These past few weeks at Youth for Christ have been amazing.  I have been learning more and more everyday. The first week was filled with meeting the staff here at YFC, two Gymblast’s and learning the ropes of YFC. My first two Gymblast’s were awesome!  I had so much fun hanging out with the youth and a bunch of former Ranger Lake campers.  It was awesome to see how many kids were interested in coming on our California Breakaway.  This is really encouraging and I am really hoping that lots of the kids will come on the trip to learn more about God and develop their relationship with Him.  

Another really big highlight for me in the past few weeks has been helping out with d4.  D4 is an awesome place for kids who went to camp and experienced a relationship with Him, but aren’t really connected with a church in Saskatoon. At d4 they are able to come and experience that a place in Saskatoon where they can grow in their relationship with God.  At d4, I am in charge of the concession and buying all the supplies for the night.  I am really excited to be connecting with kids there and leading a d4 small group! 

I have also helped out with the Drop in at the YFC Building as well as a Disorganized Sports at Mayfair school a few blocks away.  I have been playing sports and hanging out with these awesome kids.  Most of the kids that come to Drop in are connected to the DS at Mayfair. I have only been to one Drop in, but the kids are so fun and it is a great way for them to come and have fun, food and a small devotional.  Most of these kids rarely hear about Jesus so it is a great way to share the gospel with them. 

Overall my time here has been going great.  I have really connected well with the people I work with and have loved serving the kids I meet.  I can’t wait to see what else God will do this year.  God is good! 

Looking ahead!

Hello Everyone! It has been a long time since I have written a letter to my friends and family, but I am pleased to announce that I will be working at Saskatoon Youth For Christ in an internship program for the next 9 months with intent to stay working here for at least a few years.
My life has been very busy this past year and a half.  I finished my Bachelor of Arts in Christian Ministryat Briercrest College and Seminary, then I worked at Ranger Lake Bible Camp for the summer and Camp Kadesh in the fall.  I then decided to take a break from camp, lived at home and waitressed for four months in Osler.  This is where seeds were planted for my ministry here at YFC.  Through former bosses and me serving coffee to my current boss I made the step to move on to further ministry and started my partnership with YFC and RLBC, working at Ranger Lake in the summer and starting at at YFC this month. 
This year I am participating in an internship which will include a variety of different activities.  One thing I will help lead is Gymblasts, this is a school assembly program hitting almost 75 schools per year.  This opens doors for those kids to get connected with us I the future and teaches them how to serve others.  Dimension Four (otherwise known as d4) happens every Thursday night.  This is similar to a youth event but is geared towards kids who don't have a home church.  D4 partners with various camps in the area to help get kids plugged in.  Here kids will experience faith, fun, friends and food.  Disorganized sports is a weekly sports program that runs in five different schools. This program is designed for kids to have fun, and learn a little more about moral values from a Christian perspective. I will also be helping out with the drop in centre at the YFC building and California breakaway, an event during Easter break taking about 160 kids down to California, this trip allows them to grow deeper in their faith journey though having fun and hanging out with their leaders.

I am looking for a number of people to partner with me as I serve here at YFC.  I need to raise my support and funds as I work here and need people to come alongside me and provide the stability I need to work in ministry.  If you would like to support me though prayer or through finances there will be monthly updateson the activities of my life.  I will share prayer requests, praise items and pictures.  I would love to sit down for coffee or tea with some of you if this is something you would like to pursue. I am excited for this opportunity to serve and am really looking forward to this experience.  Thanks for being willing to partner with me and I am looking forward to what God will do in and through me this year.

I will descend into the pit, if you will hold tightly to the ropes.
— William Carey

 Prayer requests and needs:

-Pray for my health, I have hyperthyroidism which really effects my energy level.

-Pray for the right prayer and finical partnerships as I serve here.

Praise items: 

-Camp this year was amazing, God drew many kids to himself and lives were drastically changed for the Kingdom.

-God has been giving me an overwhelming amount of      energy since my diagnosis.

-Praise that God has brought me to work here this fall!

Join with me...

 

To donate to my account, please click on the link which takes you to the Canada Helps online donation page.    Select the 'Staff Fund' from the menu,  and put 'Carmen' in the message line.
Or you can always mail a cheque to
SYFC, 1338 Ave B N Saskatoon, S7L 1G5.
Thank you so much!


At SYFC we really value your prayer for our ministry.
I would encourage you to sign up for our short email prayer updates.

Welcome to my Online Updates!

Welcome to my online update page.  I am excited to be able to communicate with you through video, pictures, and regular updates on this page. There is lots happening these days at Saskatoon Youth For Christ and I am excited to keep you up to date as things happen so you are able to pray and know what is going on. My goal is to take our partnership to another level.
Thank you so much for your ongoing support of this ministry. It is a privilege to be able to do this and your partnership with me is key. If you have a prayer request that I could pray about on your behalf, please send me an email and I would be happy to join you in that.