One last highlight of my time at Camp Galilee was witnessing the impact of Operation Timothy – a ministry that is now led by Jeremiah & Felica Carswell. Jeremiah & Felica Carswell felt called to pursue serving Christ with their family by partnering with Mark & Mellissa Lay at Camp Galilee. They walked away from financial security and stepped out in faith to live into God's calling. They are reaching young people — most notably through Operation Timothy, a discipleship ministry. Operation Timothy is a ministry that invites young people to come for an overnight at camp once a month where they experience training, fellowship, Bible study, and more. These students are then the core of Camp Galilee’s volunteer base in the summer. This ministry has proven to be an incredibly transformative experience in the lives of many young people. Below Jeremiah and Felica explain how Operation Timothy came to be:
How did Operation Timothy start?
Operation Timothy began the 2014-15 school year (Sept-May). Summer camps alone were not sufficient to really disciple teens. So, we wanted to develop a program to keep discipleship going throughout the school year.
How do you find participants for Operation Timothy?
We look for potential candidates in observation of our Teen campers who show any interest in wanting a deeper relationship with Christ and discipleship, also by referrals, and random divine HOLY SPIRIT connections.
What is the purpose of the ministry?
The primary purpose is in-depth discipleship, servant-leadership training, and equipping for ministry in everyday life. We look to select from the group a core of those who have shown consistency and growth, in order to position them to help lead summer camps. We begin each year with a foot washing- leaders wash the feet of the Timothies, in order to establish a heart of a servant, just as Jesus instructed.
What impact have you seen as a result of the ministry?
We have seen everything from salvations to serious re-commitments, spiritual growth in maturity, and a strong desire for the Word imbedded within them. They become captivated by and hungry for the Kingdom of God. They also develop an ownership of their own salvation and relationship with Christ, as opposed to coasting on the faith of their parents.
What has been a highlight for you in leading this ministry?
The entire opportunity to invest and make disciples is a huge highlight for us. Seeing the transformation, growth, and fruitfulness within these teens is the greatest reward we could ask for.
Witnessing their minds being renewed and moving beyond a surface understanding of the Kingdom, into a maturity that resembles the character of the early church disciples. They have become passionate about Jesus, worship, serving, loving, and living out the Gospel in a tangible way that ministers LIFE to the world around them- being not only hearers, but DOERS of the Word!