Indiana South District dedicated its “New Camp Development” at its district campgrounds in Orleans, Ind., this summer.
The Eritreans (Besserat Evangelical Society) presented a sizeable gift to the district and, along with other donations, a new shower house facility and 14 customized cabins were dedicated all debt-free. This will give us an additional 168 beds for our camp, along with new mattresses. The total project costs approximately $500,000.00.
Eritrean leaders participated in the dedication.
“We give God praise for this partnership we have with the Eritrean people,” said Dr. Mark Eckart, district superintendent of Indiana South. “Many years ago, a missionary that used to pastor in our district, Rev. Fred Cromer Sr., along with his wife and family, served in Eritrea [a nation in East Africa] as missionaries. The Eritreans tell me that Rev. Cromer became excellent in learning their language and as a result many of the Eritreans became believers.”
For the last few years, the Eritreans have had their annual gathering at the Orleans Wesleyan Campgrounds. Hundreds of them come each year from around the world.
“It has been a joy to have them with us again this summer,” said Dr. Eckart. They enjoyed the new camp development this year, have filled all 14 cabins to near capacity, and even held a wedding at the campgrounds this summer.
“I was privileged to preach the first night of their camp,” said Dr. Eckart. “I have met people here who have come to the U.S. for the first time from Eritrea, as well as people from Europe that will visit here for their camp. More than 90 percent of them speak English. Leaders tell me that some come because they are Eritreans and not necessarily Christians. So this is just one more way that God is helping our district be missional in helping spread the good news of Jesus to others.”