Young Life was established in Panama in 2009. Panama, with a population of three million, is the second most competitive economy in Latin America. Its capital and largest city is Panama City where Young Life (Vida Joven) is based in the city’s oldest remnants, the old capital city of Panama Viejo.
As the city grew outward, Panama Viejo lingered in its shadow, fractured and impoverished. There, Thelma Fernandez leads a team of volunteers in an effort to address and comfort the brokenness of their community. Thelma has already had a full-time job as a youth worker in Panama and has spent significant time training with Young Life leaders in Costa Rica, as well as in the states.
For Thelma and her team, loving kids means giving them a safe place to be kids, playing soccer with them, and forging friendships. Their club has only just gotten started, and they are committed to bring new life to a community's hurting heart.
Our team will participate in a community service project in Panama Viejo that the Panama staff will determine as the trip draws closer. While we are there, we will have the opportunity to witness Young Life in another country, love on staff, leaders, and kids, and continue to spread the good news of Jesus to His people!
Jesus is the reason we go. We travel to another country and spend time loving on their high school kids because they need to experience the love of Jesus. We go love on their leaders because they need to know that what they are doing has eternal effects. We go because Jesus said, in Matthew 28, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey all I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of age.”
Sometimes people aren’t able to go, yet they still love from where they are! God has fortunately blessed me with the ability to go and I owe it to Him to answer that call and to go for those who are unable to!
What is Young Life? Visit this link to read more about this amazing ministry!