Thursday, April 14, 2011

On the Road Again!

Posted by: Erika This post comes to you from Interstate 95 in northern Florida. We just crossed the Georgia-Florida border! We are currently driving on the road and posting at the same time, courtesy of Mr. Smith's handy dandy internet-supplying cell phone. Many thanks, Mr. Smith! Sorry for not posting last night, we were all very tired and just about to collapse when we reached our hotel in Savannah, Georgia. It seems like all of the work of the past week hit us all at once! Yesterday morning we departed from Long View Ranch at 8:30. None of us wanted to leave, but we are all looking forward to being home with our families tonight. We stopped at Savannah, Georgia, where we enjoyed a scavenger hunt around the beautiful, historic city. The hunt concluded the rivalry that has been brewing between the guys and the girls since manhunt Friday night, with the girls winning! After the scavenger hunt, we split up into groups of five or more and went to various restaurants for dinner, Panera Bread and a local pizza company being the favorites. We then traveled to our hotel, which was about a half an hour drive from Savannah. Once we reached the hotel, we separated into our rooms and settled down for the night, the last one we would spend away from home. This morning, we woke up, packed, ate breakfast, and got on the bus, departing at about 8. We are aiming to be back in Boca around 4 pm, give or take. See you soon! Sophomores signing off!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Last days

Posted by: Norah Note from Mrs. Barnhill: for some reason we were unable to post this last night, but here it is:
Hi, it’s been a busy couple of days without a chance to blog, so I’ll try to catch you up on what’s been going on. Monday the boys and a few girls got up at 5:30 and rode the bus to My Father’s House in Phoenix to help the disciples feed the homeless. The boys heard some testimonies and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. The girls had a little more time to sleep in (7:00). They helped the women disciples make bracelets. These bracelets will serve as visual aids for the disciples to lead others to Christ that they may see the colors and remember what they each represent. There were also a few homeless women at this event.
After a busy morning we packed up said sad good byes to our Dream Center friends and went to Sedona. We arrived in Sedona and had a delicious lunch. After a hearty meal most of the junior class was ready to take on Cathedral Rock. It took a lot of team work but they made it work. Those who did not go hiking went shopping in the various shops.
Although hiking took most of our energy, we had one last important thing, a snowball fight. It started out as Floridians losing their minds in a white abyss, but shifted to something much dramatic. It became an all out girls versus boys match. Looking at just numbers one would assume that the girls, 12, would easily beat the boys, 6. But reality has a way of doing its own thing. The boys forced the girls into a pitiful retreat. The girls hid anywhere they could behind trees, cars and yes, teachers.
The boys shared a victory dinner together; the girls, however, left the loss behind and were enjoying other things. After diner the boys and girls separated for devotions. These devotions were the highlight of every girl’s trip. We shared our stories, our pains and our tears. Even if every girl had a slightly different struggle in their life we knew that the love of God and the sisterly love we had for each other would pull us through, as 1 Peter 4:8 states : Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
Today we enjoyed the scenic views of the Grand Canyon on the South Rim. If ever there was a time when God shined through His creation it would have been then. We saw beautiful rock formations, no two quite the same. This and many other natural beauties make it plain to see a designer as the feasible means of this earth and its existence.
We are now coming to a close and will arrive home, God willing, at around 11 pm. Your prayers thus far have been greatly appreciated and we ask that they keep coming in we make our way home. This trip has impacted all of us in ways we never thought possible. We hope to take all we have learned and put into practice, using it to help further our relationship with Christ.
Posted by: Mrs. Barnhill Here are a few pictures from yesterday and today. It's after midnight and technical difficulties are preventing us from completing this post today, so tune in tomorrow for a more complete update! All is well and we've had a great trip!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Everything You Thought You Knew About Love is About to Change

Posted by: Erika and Laura

What a day! It started off normally with our usual schedule and ended in the most spectacular, moving way.
Our service project for today was at Mountain View Ministries, a spiritual outreach for needy families. It is run by a missionary family who gives clothes, household items, and food to people in need. We were split up into several different small groups and spread throughout the storehouse and set to many different jobs, such as building a pantry, folding clothes, and organizing everything from shoes to food to paint. We enjoyed a small break for lunch during which we played the game Black Magic with the children of the family who runs Mountain View Ministries. After lunch, we went right back to work doing more organizing and also taping a large amount of clothes hangers together.
After we finished at Mountain View Ministries, we headed back to Long View Ranch, where we enjoyed a few hours of free time before dinner. We all enjoyed one of the trails down to the lake, where many of the guys took a dip in the chilly water! After they dried off, we spent the rest of the afternoon in the dining hall around the fireplace in which logs crackled in an orange inferno. Mrs. Widmaier also treated us to hot chocolate and marshmallows.
Our last (but definitely not least!) Long View supper consisted of a full Thanksgiving dinner, complete with turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, green beans, and carrots cooked in cinnamon and brown sugar! It was delicious, and one of our favorite meals! For dessert, we enjoyed a brownie topped with vanilla ice cream, a sweet ending to our meal.
Praise and worship and devotional time followed dinner, in which we reviewed all of our readings of I John. We each came up with titles for all of the five chapters as well as a title for the entire book. We then collaborated in our small groups to pick one title for each chapter and the whole book and voted on which one we thought fit best! Tonight's blog title is the title chosen for the whole book of I John.
After devotions, we had a time of affirmation (AKA the Love Bomb) around the camp fire, in which we each wrote something positive about our classmates. We shared our notes and then had another amazing time of worship around the fire with rain falling softly all around us. This time, filled with many tears of joy and laughter, was a fitting conclusion to our unbelievable time at Long View Ranch.
Sophomores signing off on the final night in Tennessee.

Freshmen Mission Trip 2011

Monday, April 11, 2011

Class Picture

Posted by: Mrs. Poole

Day 4

Posted by: Brittney

I want to share with you what God did last night. The day was over fast, coming to a close. Devotion time was in the classroom. Everyone gathered in a circle for group discussion. Since it was our last night, it was our turn to share on how we felt about our experiences at the H.E.A.R.T. Institute. Each person began to speak, pouring their hearts out to the point of tears! So many were willing to put down their guard to share openly and to feel the powerful presence of God. People who even weren't sharing were also affected emotionally, bringing a strong love for one another, comforting each other, no matter who it was. He touched each one of us that night. We encouraged one another and grew as a family in Christ. The next day, the usual cliques and friend groups had disappeared and everyone was loving on everyone else, no matter whether or not they had been friends before the trip. I hope our ninth grade class will continue to love and continue an effort to stay so close with everyone!!

Posted by: Sam

On Monday afternoon, our class had the chance to conquer "the wall." This wall was part of the H.E.A.R.T. Institute's ropes course, and the purpose was to develop community and teamwork. Troy took the leadership role in strategizing who would go up the wall next. We all watched as a team that never gave up and always encouraged people. Even through the heat of the day, everyone was still putting 110% effort with NO complaining.

A note from Mrs. Poole: This class, the biggest group that has ever attempted the H.E.A.R.T. Institute's wall, was also (according to the staff members) one of the best groups to do so! Thanks to the student leaders and team players in this BRCS freshman class, they had everyone up and over the wall (including 4 out of 5 chaperones) in record time, with very little frustration or anxiety because by this time in the trip, everyone loved and trusted everyone else. It has been so exciting to see this class come together and accomplish mammoth tasks this weekend. These are some of the strongest, wisest, and most loving students I've ever been around, and I really believe that there is nothing this class can't accomplish. This is your future, BRCS high school! Be excited!

No Rest for the Weary

Posted by: Erika and Laura

After our normal morning routine, the students were divided into two separate work teams. One team was composed of Bergen, Katie, Jackie, Kailey, Cole, Caleb, Dylan, Heber, Laura, and Erika. Mr. Hood and Mr. Widmaier accompanied them to the home of Valerie and Evan. There, they did a variety of jobs including cutting back old blackberry bushes, retying grapevines, cutting up trees, removing debris, and creating a new pasture by clearing a variety of trees. According to Mr. Hood, it was two of the most challenging hours of work he has ever done with our missions trips- he was incredibly impressed with the work of the team.
The other team, which consisted of Jami, Hope, Benji, Kevin, Nicole, Juliana, Sam, Lauren, and RJ, traveled to Disciple's Point with Mr. Smith. There, they painted a room of the church, built a wheelchair access ramp, and added new foliage to the landscaping. Once they were finished at Disciple's Point, they returned to Long View Ranch to clean windows in the dining hall.
Everyone returned to much needed rest and free time, which included hikes on the trails through the woods and unplanned dips in the creek. Another delicious meal from Long View included the famous Long View Ranch raspberry jam and rolls. Praise and worship followed, with devotions soon after. We definitely felt God's spirit moving tonight! The night concluded with a rambunctious, rowdy, collision-filled game of "Stand Up and Scatter." Cheers were heard when our 9:30 bedtime was announced!
Thank you so much for your prayers for Mrs. Riter! She is feeling much better! But we have a new prayer request- that the rest of us won't catch her bug. Thank you for your prayers!
Very tired but joyful sophomores signing off!

P.S. Sorry, no pictures tonight!


Posted by: Hollie Hageman

Its been another glorious day in Costa Rica for our senior class! The morning consisted of breakfast, and TAG time. We read in Genesis where Joseph was given difficult circumstances after he told his family he had dreams about him being king and his brothers ended up selling him out to Egypt where his dreams came true. It questioned us on how we can live a legacy today in our mission work. We attended our morning sites where we had the best attendance, and response ever! For lunch, we enjoyed a picnic at a local waterfall (viewed in the pic) where we all got to swim in the freezing cold water! We ministered at our afternoon sites for the last time, which was very sad for some of us to say goodbye to the kids we fell in love with :) Now we just ate dinner, are are preparing for worship and another good word from AWESOME ALBERT! Many of the students in our class have really been touched by the messages that have been given. Tomorrow morning we will be heading out to our morning sites to say our goodbyes and will be taking a 2 hour trip to Volcano Arenal for the next two days. We have access to one computer in the hotel lobby so hopefully we can still keep you guys posted! Continue to pray for the mission trips taking place throughout Boca Christian, God is doing amazing things and touching and saving lives!


Arizona Day 4

Posted by: Norah
Last night and a good part of the early morning we spent ministering to girls caught in sex trafficking. These girls have been told lies. Such as they are beautiful and everyone needs to experience their beauty, or they were promised jobs. Nevertheless, they were caught up in sex-trafficking and most of the girls went out to help them. All those who went out and helped the working girls, were very nervous on their fist time out. But everyone agreed that seeing those girls’ faces brighten up amidst all their darkness because of a simple rose, made all the disquiet worthwhile. The boys and some girls stood out side picketing. They stood outside in the cold and stood up for what they believed in, literally.
Today we arose to a frigid morning and a good sermon. We attended a morning service at the Dream Center for Church on the Street. Pastor Walt spoke on how without faith it is impossible to please God. We cannot truly count on God until we have complete faith in God. When that happens we will draw close to God and him to us.
After the morning service, we had lunch at the Dream Center with all those who attended the church service.
We then went to Chicken Park and did a family outreach. We painted children’s faces and did crafts with them. Our worship team also led those present in a few songs. We met a drunk who decided that today was the day he wanted to take a step towards Christ. He is now going through the processes necessary to be admitted into the Dream Center.
Afterwards, we went hiking at South Mountain Park. Unfortunately, it was silent Sunday and we could not drive to the top of the mountain. But that did not stop us Blazers. We climbed up another trail and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
We then went and had dinner at Popo’s, an authentic Mexican eatery. We all enjoyed the company of those at our table and the food.
Lastly, we had devotions and went over all the various activities we have done so far. The overwhelming consensus is that these past few days have been very helpful. These days have opened our eyes to see how good we have it and how we sometimes take it for granted.
After devotions we shared many great laughs. Casey and Mrs. Barnhill sung a spellbinding round of “There’s a Hole in the Bucket” and “What a Friend in Jesus”. The other girls and boys also had fun. Over all, we had a great time in Phoenix.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Posted by: Hollie Hageman

Hola! This morning we woke up to a beautiful morning and had church right at Pura Vida! The class was able to meet new people and actually hear a church service in english! Pastor James taught in Acts 27 the story of Paul and the shipwreck. He helped us understand that God is there to help you in times of life's storms and always be of good cheer! As the day progressed we split up after lunch to our afternoon sites where Gabby Alfieri and Hollie Hageman (me) shared their testimonies. Afterwards, the class went to the centro (sort of like a busy street with lots of shops). There some of us were able to buy various snacks, and a big favorite, coffeeeeee! (Costa Rica has amazing coffee). When we arrived back at Pura Vida, dinner was served, and we gathered for our nightly worship and message from the (amazing) Albert!!! He taught on the story of Hosea 1 & 3 and how God called him to love a prostitute whom was so unfaithful but he showed her Gods redeeming love. (LOVE OUT LOUD)
Tomorrows is our last day of our ministry, and Dr. Tennies will be departing tomorrow. All is going well for the glory of God here, continue to keep our senior class in your prayers!

Pictures are a little hard to post btw (by the way)

P.S. Gabby says hi to casey!

P.P.S. we all miss you guys! (alot)

A Day of Rest

Posted by: Erika and Laura

Today started off with the great habit we are developing of 20 mins of devotions. Our continued study of I John brought us to chapter 3 today. We are discovering awesome truths of our relationship with God. Everyone was grateful for the well-needed extra sleep we got because of our later start for church. At ten o' clock we headed out for Disciple's Point church. The service began with an open-mic time, where anyone could share praises, prayer requests, etc.. Benji, Cole, and Erika quoted a few passages of Scripture that we are memorizing from I John. The sermon was given by a guest speaker, and his topic was Psalm 131. After the church service, we feasted on a smorgasbord meal hosted by the members of Disciple's Point. It was a wonderful experience to be in the company of other believers who were so welcoming and inviting to us.
After lunch, we returned to Long View Ranch, where we had some time to relax before paintball and horseback riding. Each of the girls rode horses except for Bergen and Katie, who rocked the paintball course! The guys all took part in paintball - which provided some heated battles between Mr. Hood's team (Katie, Cole, Kevin, Mr. Smith, Benji) and Caleb's team (Bergen, RJ, Sam, Heber, Dylan) - with Caleb's ultimately winning 3-2.
Another delicious meal followed horseback riding and paintball. Tonight we had taco salad for dinner, a Long View Ranch classic. For nightly devotions, we watched a video about the parable of the prodigal son. We learned that the story is not just about the prodigal son, but about the older son as well.
Unfortunately, Mrs. Riter was not able to join us for church or afternoon activities, as she has not been feeling well and decided to rest up. Please keep her in your prayers!
Sophomores signing off! (sorry, no pictures today!)

Day 3

Posted by: Sarah Reed

The freshman class woke up to another day, excited to go to the Hatian church. Morning chores included feeding animals, making breakfast, and weeding. After working, breakfast included cereal, bananas, and freshly picked mulberries.

After eating a wonderful breakfast, we all got ready and boarded the bus for the Haitian church. The bus ride was very musical, and it put us in a great mood as we entered the church. Though most of the service was in Creole, and most of us couldn't understand what was going on, it was a wonderful and uplifting time to see how other cultures worship God.

Did I mention how great Haitian food is? The pastor's daughter at the church organized a lunch for us, and the sight of great food and soda (and ice!!) made many of the freshmen think we were in heaven! We had a great time of fellowship with the people at the church, and then headed back to camp.

We are now enjoying a much appreciated break, and it's bringing a wonderful break from the sunshine. Tonight, we will be playing games and eating burgers and hot dogs roasted over a campfire.

We can't wait to see our families and our homes. We're having fun, but we miss everyone in Boca!

From Mrs. Poole - Thank you for posting comments!!! The kids LOVE hearing the notes you post them when I read them out loud! Thank you even more for your prayers - we can feel them!

Day 3

Posted by: Norah
Traveling to an area known for its aridity, precipitation was the least of our worries. Unfortunately, today we beat the odds and had uncanny amounts of rain, sleet and hail. The precipitation was tolerable; however, the bitter cold was not.
This morning, we went to many neighborhoods inviting them to the Easter services at Phoenix First Assembly of God. As we canvassed the neighborhoods, we prayed that the church will reap the benefits of our labor.
Afterwards, we had lunch at the Dream Center. We then had much needed time to rest and prepare ourselves for our upcoming adventures.
After our 4 pm dinner, we left for a children’s outreach. They were teaching the children about the Ten Commandments. Sadly, after only 25 minutes we were rained out. The children ran to cover when the rain, sleet and a little hail scared them away.
Soon we will all take part in the Rescue Project, an outreach to girls caught in the sex trafficking industry. We are anxious to see how God will use us tonight! We’ll let you know tomorrow. . .

Saturday, April 09, 2011


Posted by: Hollie Hageman and Mrs. Rhodes

We will begin where i left off last night, the soccer game was a great opportunity! Billy got to play with the club team! Eighteen of us, joined our own game afterwards with a fun time had by all. By the time we got back to Pura Vida we were all really exhausted so that ended day 2. This morning in TAG time we learned that to "love out loud = doing." We were challenged by 1 John 3:18, "Let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth."
After devotions, we departed again to our different sites, both sites doubling the amount of children that showed up with approx. 50 kids per site. (God is amazing!) Brittany Wright and Izabela Bautista shared their testimonies to the kids today, both touching the children's and even some of the mother's hearts. We left our second site a little early in order to attend a youth service in town. This really challenged all of us in the sense that we didn't know what was being said, but knowing that it doesn't matter what language you are speaking its all about the heart of worship. We have just finished our time of, "BIG UPS" which is a time of encouraging each other, and "GLORIA DIOS," which is a time of giving God all the glory for what He did in and through our day. Its been amazing to see how my fellow classmates have been able to hear more clearly, the voice of God, when being away from our normal lifestyles. (Come to the chapel to hear more juicy details! :p) Now, we are settling down for the night praying for God to continue to move throughout our time here in Costa Rica.

P.S. Due to our hectic schedule and limited internet access, pictures have to be loaded (which takes time). Hopefully we will be able to share soon, but we definitely have hundreds of photos (again, please come to the chapel to see our amazing pictures!!!) :D

Day 2

Posted by: Nicole Ciavola

Hi, everyone! Today at the HEART Institute the freshmen did many different, exciting activities! We did various activities such as ropes courses, gardening, feeding the animals, and working on a fence out in the pasture. Today was great, but the most amazing part was our dinner. We all gathered outside like we normally do before eating, and were greeted with a surprise. Envelopes containing pieces of paper were randomly parceled out to both students and counselors. The papers had different things written on them. A student either received millionaire, middle class rich, or no piece of paper at all. Then, those with "millionaire" written on their papers sat down to a meal of chicken, those with "middle class rich" written on their papers ate rice and beans, and those with no paper received no food at all. After those who got food had eaten and we had prayed, the groups were asked to share what they were thinking. We learned in such a powerful way that there are people all over the world that are in great need, and as Christians, Jesus wants us to help them. We also learned to be much more grateful for what we have. All in all, this missions trip has been great and the Lord has been moving among us! Thank you all for your prayers, and please also pray for God to encourage us and give us His strength to continue serving with His joy. Please also pray for the Lord to continue moving in us, to teach us what He wills, and impact us greatly this weekend!

A note from Mrs. Poole: The pictures uploaded from today are of my group on the rope course, Kaitlyn with her empty Poor Man envelope, and Mr. Calder's group after accomplishing the amazing feat of digging dozens of 8-foot deep holes and inserting posts for almost an entire fence. My favorite moment of this trip thus far was emerging from my blogging responsibilities last night to find almost every single member of the class huddled around a few lanterns and Troy's guitar, singing praise songs together at the top of their lungs during the evening free time when these freshmen could have chosen to be goofing off, playing games, sleeping, or showering. There are so many individuals in this class I've been blessed by! Thank you for lending them to us for four days!

The hills are alive with the sound of chainsaws!

Posted by: Erika and Laura

We began our day with devotions, continuing our study of I John with the second chapter. A nutritious breakfast followed, giving us our strength for the day! The real fun began soon after breakfast, when we left the Long View Ranch for our first service project: cutting and loading logs onto huge camouflaged army trucks, which transported the wood to a storage facility, where they will stay until they are needed to warm people's homes during the winter. There were multiple volunteers from the community slicing fallen trees with chainsaws (Mr. Hood joining them), while the rest of us loaded the logs into trucks. After two hours of loading firewood, we went to the Disciple's Point church in Greeneville, Tennessee, where we were served a delicious barbeque meal. Tomorrow we will be returning to Disciple's Point for a Sunday morning church service. When lunch concluded, we returned to where we had been loading logs before, and continued doing so until around 4 o' clock. All in all, we were able to fill five truckloads with firewood- a new sophomore class record! After we accomplished our mission, we returned to Long View Ranch after a long, hard day of hauling firewood, just in time for dinner. Praise and worship followed our supper of pork, cheese potato casserole, and veggies, with cupcakes for dessert. We had our nightly devotions, during which we gathered in our small groups and reviewed all that we have read and learned over the past two days. Thankfully, we had ideal weather during our working hours, but once we arrived back at Long View, thunder and lightning flooded the sky and torrents of water came gushing down. Part two of manhunt (a rematch) will have to wait until weather permits.
Sophomores signing off!
Posted by: Mrs. Barnhill Our day started early with an outreach to the homeless, serving breakfast, distributing clothes, and leading in praise and worship. Everyone met interesting people with a variety of stories. One of the Dream Center disciples ministered to our girls with special words of encouragement. Back at the Center, the girls attended a women's Bible study while the boys attended a time of worship with the men. The afternoon was spent at the St. Mary's food bank, the first food bank ever established! We were all impressed with the efficiency and scope of the operation. Some students worked with the client check-in process, some filled food boxes, and others helped carry food to people's cars. We were all blessed by this ministry. After dinner (which is at 4 pm!) we did a small outreach right across the street from the Dream Center, during which our girls led in praise and worship and performed a skit called "The Orpah Show." We ended the day at the "Family Fun Night" here at the center, during which we were blessed by the musical gifts of 2 Christian rappers and one other gentleman who sang for us and shared a small part of his testimony. We closed our time with group devotions in which we shared about the impact the day had on us. It has been a blessing to see everyone working hard and stretching out of their comfort zones. Our disciple leader, Ben, whose testimony some of the seniors may remember, complimented our students on their unity as they worked together. Good night!

Friday, April 08, 2011

Working and Playing Hard

Posted by: Erika and Laura

After arriving at Longview Ranch, we sat down to a delicious home-cooked meal. A quick orientation soon followed, then we got right to work! Mr. and Mrs. Widmaier, our gracious hosts, already had four projects for us to get started on. We were split up into four teams. A group of strong ladies cleared the woods of debris, making piles to be burned. Meanwhile, a group of guys built two decorative fences along the entrance to Longview. Mrs. Riter led a group of students splitting logs using a log splitter to prepare firewood for the Widmaiers' home. Last, but not least, the final group hauled the firewood with a tractor driven by Mr. Widmaier and stacked the logs alongside their house.
After dinner, (which included tasty homemade ice cream sandwich cake!) Benji Crane led all of us in worship with nothing but his guitar and our voices- it was truly a blessing. We went on to begin our study of I John using the inductive Bible study method- using colored markers to identify key parts of the scripture passage. We are also memorizing small sections of I John within our small groups, which consist of three or four people per group.
The evening concluded with an exciting, competitive game of man hunt, boys vs. girls. There was a lot of hiding, screaming, dirt, and scratches (there are a lot of thorn bushes in the woods) but the game eventually closed in a draw.
We are tired but happy to finally be here.
Sophomores signing off!

Day 1 at HEART

Posted by: David Honeycutt

Today we arrived at the Heart institute tired and hot! We quickly unpacked our luggage into our cabins (which are named after "peace" in other languages) and then returned to the mess hall to go on a quick tour of the grounds. The cabins are two story structures with beds, bunk beds, and bed frames. Windows are our only source of air conditioning and there are NO lights. We were introduced to the toiletries and showers on the tour. After, teams were formed, team leaders were assigned, and the team's jobs were announced. I was on Mrs. Poole's team, AKA: Team CHESTNUT! My team's first job was to clean the little school classroom they had there. The school had a piano!!!! I played on it while cleaning. :-) After that was a little free time. Others played basketball, catch, and just sat around socializing. After the free time, my group, the Chestnuts, went to go rake dead grass into a truck, which took it to a composting post. We sang while we worked (well, mainly Mrs. Poole and Kaitlin and I). The sun was fierce, making our work even more gruesome (vocab word!). All of our group's chores were mainly outside; in the sun; hot. The Heart Institute also had a huge farm with goats, chickens, goats, microbes in the compost, and goats! After our group finished raking hay, we went into town to help a dude clean his yard. Renée drove us there, and Mrs. Pancake (isn't that the coolest name?) drove us back. We were taught how to slaughter a chicken (we didn't get to...sadly...), and we were also taught a lot about composting.

A note from Mrs. Poole: Thank you for all of your prayers! Today was filled with plenty of hard work, but during devotions some of the students shared how wonderful it was to be around each other without the normal complaining and grumbling that ironically goes on when they are in more comfortable circumstances at school. I was really impressed with the hard work and perseverance demonstrated by so many of your students! About 20 minutes into our raking project today, one of the students said, "You know, this is really relaxing!" And everyone agreed! Another student mentioned how freeing it was not to have to worry about looking all put-together and nice, since we were just there to serve, not to impress anyone. It's been encouraging to see these kids grow as they are stretched in their service for Christ!

Day 2 @ Pura Vida missions

Posted by: Hollie Hageman

Woke up to a foggy, and misty morning in San Ramon, Costa Rica. What felt like 8'o clock (time difference of 2 hrs) turned out to be 6 am, and we were all up and ready for the day!! After eating our breakfast we were able to have TAG (time alone with God) time. We read 1 Corinthians 13 and learned what to love out loud really means. Around 9:30 we split up to our different sites and began our daily activities. Moments were spent with the children by singing songs, sharing testimonies, playing games, and learning the theme verse for the week, John 3:16. As the afternoon progressed, the weather got darker (as you can see in the photo). God allowed one group to completely finish their VBS activites, but my group caught stuck in a huge rainstorm, leading us to a time of bonding in a neighbors garage. The time with the kids really inspired the class to really "Love out loud." Now were getting ready for supper, and afterwards going to an indoor soccer field to watch some club players and then play a friendly game against each other.
A special note from Dr. Tennies,
"We praise God for an incredible trip to Costa Rica. The mountain views are inspiring. The Pura Vida staff have a wonderful servant spirit and have things well organized. We have two groups out doing a morning an afternoon VBS in local neighbor hoods. They call the program, "Campamentos de ninos." Our students have really risen to the occasion with student lead skits, singing, crafts, testimonies, scripture memory, and closing talks. We saw some children today respond to the salvation message, Praise the Lord! During down time, the students are having a glorious time playing a variety of group games. Happy times! Keep praying for God to work mightily in our hearts and to those whom we seek to minister to."

For more pictures , the director of Pura Vida Missions has posted a Boca Christian album to share with Facebook fans.
P.S. Izabela's bag arrived last night from Nicaragua! LOL

The Freshmen Departed Early Today

Thanks, Mrs. Ross, for this photo!

First Day in AZ

Posted by: Norah
We arrived in Arizona! The desert air is crisp and dry but the blue skies and sunshine are a nice reminder of home. The Dream Center staff workers welcomed us with open arms. We had a little down time that we used to settle in our rooms and get acquainted with Phoenix.
We then enjoyed lunch with one of the disciples. He told us his riveting story. He was on the straight and narrow. But after being beaten, he began to hate life and subsequently joined a gang. He got involved in the usual activities associated with being in a gang. This left him face to face with the barrel of a gun one night. The disciple was shot twice in the back, and stabbed multiple times. He, by the grace of God recovered, and gave his life over to God. The disciple later developed a lump in his throat. His sister, a doctor, took a needle to try and extract the lump from his throat. She found the lump to be very hard in nature, unlike most other lumps. She used the needle to extract the lump, which turned out to be a bullet! The disciple was very much affected by this; in fact, to this day he carries around the bullet in his pocket.
After hearing his story, we decided to unwind at Papago Park and climb vast amounts of rock. Although these Floridians have not seen anything higher than Mt. Trashmore, they stepped up to the challenge. Some groups even climbed 2 of the highest mountains.
We ended our day on a positive note with devotion from 1 Peter chapter 1. One of the verses that impacted us was verse 22. It spoke of the purification process that comes with obeying the truth. What better place to see this, than at the Dream Center? We learned that God takes us all from different places. He heals us all in different ways; however, through His Son, Jesus Christ, we all are brothers and sisters.

PS: Casey says hi.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

More Than Halfway There! :)

Posted by: Erika and Laura
Hey, y'all!
Good evening from the sophomore class, from Newberry, South Carolina! We are staying at the Hampton Inn. It was a long and tiresome day, but we are having a blast! The day was filled with fun, laughs, and naps on the bus. The bus ride went smoothly, and dinner at Cracker Barrel was delicious and very entertaining. Our pick of the day: the Fudge Coca Cola Cake a la mode!
Tomorrow looks like it will be a great day. We will arrive at Long View Ranch in Mosheim, Tennessee around noon, and then the real fun will begin!
We'll keep you updated with a new post nightly.
Thank you for your prayers and please keep them coming!
Sophomores signing off!


Day 1 @ Pura Vida

Posted by: Hollie Hageman & Alicia Feldi

Our journey started when we left Boca Christian at 6:30 am this morning to arrive at Miami International Airport. All was well with the flight and we were excited to see how beautiful Costa Rica really is. A couple of unexpected turns (loss of baggage) have already taught us to be flexible. "Latin up" is the popular phrase here for, lighten up. We got to the site and were split up into two groups where we each were assigned different tasks for the four Vacation Bible School sites we will be working at for the next four days( 2 in the morning and 2 in the afternoon). There we will be singing, playing, and most importantly sharing the love of Jesus Christ with the Costa Rican kids. After lunch, we dispersed into our groups and went on what they call a "prayer walk." We used this time to go to one of the sites each group will be working with, and invited kids out for the upcoming activities and also prayed for God's favor and annointing. Now we're off to worship and learn God's word. Pray for God to use us mightily in revealing the Gospel.


Posted by: Mrs. Barnhill and Amber We arrived safely at the Dream Center and are settling in to our rooms. Everything has gone very smoothly so far, praise the Lord. After lunch we willhead to Popago Park for a hike, and hopefully we will be involved in ministry this evening. Amber says: "Hi! This place is way better than I thought!" We're praying for the other teams and hope everyone is doing great!

Last day on Campus!

Posted by: Katelyn, Rosa, Troy, Jensen, David, Jason, and Alan

Since all of the other grades already left on their mission trips, we Freshmen rule the school today! The freshmen in high school choir spent 7th period singing together in preparation for group de-briefing time at the HEART institute. Troy will be bringing his guitar and leading the class in worship, and the rest of us are really looking forward to praising the Lord not only with our service in Lake Wales, but with our voices as well!

Thanks for your prayers! We'll keep you posted in the days to come!