Egypt is my 2nd Home

Hello from my favorite place in the world! My name is Grace, and I love this place so much. It is with such bittersweet emotions that I type this blog.  It is sweet in that we have had such an amazing time this summer. We have been here longer, worked more camps, and met more people than any past trip….and that is sweet.  Yet, tomorrow is our last full day of camp and that makes me more sad than I can put into words.

One of the things we did this year in our coach meeting is share highs, struggles, and place where we saw God show up.  Since you have already heard about our typical days and seen great pictures and instagram posts, I thought I would share these…

Highs…there are too many highs to list.  Games we play, seeing our incredible friends, leaving our phones in our rooms, and serving together with a group of amazing people are highs for me.

Struggles….teaching sports to students that have never picked up a ball, long/hot days, little rest, food that doesn’t always agree with your system, and missing team members when they go home are challenges for me.

God moments….sunsets, dancing with friends, and sensing God working on my own heart and not just in those we serve has been awesome.  My dad always says God is up to something, and this year I can definitely tell that He is. I hope that I continue to recognize that everyday and not just when I am serving in this amazing place.

Thank you for being a part of sending me here.  While I can never really say thank you enough, please know I am forever changed because of this trip, these people, and your generosity.

I am already counting down the days until I get to come back again,

Grace Rich

 

A Day in the Life of Dubs

Hey everyone! I’m Wyatt Rich and I will be talking about day 4 of W4. First off, this is my second year at wadi sports camp and it is one of the best experiences of my life!! Today started off with the campers getting to sleep in and have church in the morning. Trust me this was needed for everyone, but today was still action packed with fun. Hayden and I are coaching Ultimate Frisbee this camp and it has been a blast coaching with my brother and best friend. After church, we went to sessions which is a super fun part of the day. Ricky and I reffed Drapeau, which is basically a creative way to play capture the flag. Whoop Whoop!! Pool time is next and that is my favorite part of the day! Campers, coaches, and staff get to all hang out together in the pool, playing games, or maybe eating some ice cream. Today, I just watched a group of guys play spike ball and it was honestly so amazing to see how much everyone gets along here at WSC, it truly shows God’s glory.

After lunch and rest time, it was time for Clash of Clans, WSC’s biggest and greatest X-Period. This is a camp wide game that every single camper is involved in. All of the coaches were in charge of the Warrior Stations.  I was able to help campers learn how to throw horseshoes. It is easy to forget that they don’t get to do some of the same things we do growing up. At the end of the game, we got to grill out burgers and enjoy a night of talking and sharing with our camp friends.  Did I mention I love this place?

At the end of each day, I am super tired from a long day in the sun.  Yet, I am also so thankful that God has allowed me to be here and learn so much.  I hope not to take any day for granted as I know we only have 4 more days of camp left.  Thank you for helping me come to this amazing place and work with these amazing people. I know I am forever changed because of what happens here. 

Good night from Wadi Sports Camp,

Wyatt “Dubs” Rich

 

Wadi Camp 4

Hello everyone!!! Cate here!! Today was the first full day of W4, and what a blast it was. The pace of this camp is much different than W2 and W3 because the kids are older and more mature. So far, it is going great, but duh.. its Wadi. I started the day at baseball with Greg. I’ve coached baseball every year and it is always so encouraging to see the kids start on day one not knowing how to throw a ball and end the week in a full game. After majors and the classic scrambled egg breakfast, we headed to ref sessions (Wyatt and I did Wallyball today). One of my favorite parts of each day is after sessions; pool time. It is a time of relationship building, carefree dancing and lots of laughter. Alongside dinner, pool time is a raw chunk of the day to get to know staff and campers on a new level that I normally cannot do because I’m blowing a whistle in their face. 

Today was a little different day for me, I was in the skit during the gathering before the first X-Period of the day. I practiced all of rest time in order to get it right… because it was 100% in Arabic. I was super nervous that I would mess up the phrases and embarrass myself, but the campers loved it and were so kind to me about it throughout the rest of the day. It was definitely out of my comfort zone, but I had so much fun practicing with my friends before and making everyone laugh. It was for sure the highlight of my day. 

Tonight, after the X-Period of Survivor and dinner, we have the Cross Walk. I’m sure if you have been following along with the blog or Instagram, you have seen or heard of this before. I cannot express how incredible it is to sit and watch each cabin carry a cross while listening to the Word of God and worship music. Although every second of the night is incredible, the most impactful part of the Cross Walk is the talk at the end. It is in Arabic, but that reminds me that God’s truth is universal and what He did on the cross goes beyond any culture, country or language. And that truth goes for this whole trip. What an amazing God we serve. These relationships I create here in Egypt stay strong and will last a lifetime because they are built on a love for Jesus and people. We share the same God. We may have different cultures and we may not speak the same language, but the God we serve loves each of us, no matter where we are from, with the same heart and fills us all with the same joy. 

I will never be able to put into words my passion and heart for Egypt, this camp and these people. The Lord blessed me big time by allowing me to serve here. I can’t wait for what He has for the rest of W4 and for the years I come back to this incredible place, where His presence is so clearly evident. 

Thank you for your prayers and support!! 

-Cate Goen

 

Never Leaving Wadi

Hello all! My name is Aubrie Elliott and this is my first time serving at Wadi Sports Camp. I am from Midland, Texas and I just recently graduated from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor with a degree in Pre-Vet Biology. I played basketball all four years of my college career but somehow I coached volleyball during W3 camp! I can’t say I wasn’t prepared though, Geoff always told us to be flexible! 

The last full day of camp was this last Monday (7/15) and it was so bittersweet! The day started with majors like always, and in volleyball we spent the hour playing several different fun games with the campers! Because it was the last day, each major was responsible for handing out three awards — MVP, Most Improved, and I Am Third. The I am Third award goes to the person who is able to put others first and show Christ’s love the most throughout majors! For volleyball, the I Am Third award went to a camper who was always willing to shag balls without complaining, who had the best attitude even when he would mess up, and who was just really enjoyable to be around! I could definitely tell this camper loved the Lord just by the way he played volleyball each morning so it was so special to get to recognize him for that!

Typically after majors, the campers go to breakfast and then have two sessions before going to the pool. But instead of sessions, we had a giant, Hawaiian themed pool party! Pool time is definitely one of my favorite parts of camp because it gives us coaches a chance to have intentional conversations with the campers and staff that we normally don’t have time to do. My conversations at the pool have been the most genuine, life-giving times at camp. After every conversation I am reminded of how big and faithful our God is! The same God who loves and takes care of me in America is the same God who loves and takes care of his people in Egypt. I have always known that God is consistent everywhere, but it wasn’t until this trip that I’ve truly been able to understand what that means! About an hour into swimming, the loud music playing was interrupted by the sound of the Hunger Games whistle, so each counselor had to pick a “tribute” from their cabin to compete in the games! The game for that day involved each tribute betting coins on different hidden items. Some of the mystery items included cheeseburgers, shaving cream, and a even plain old egg! While not every tribute was super excited about their winnings, they all had such a good time and it was so fun to witness! I am amazed at the way the Wadi staff has created such incredible games and events to meet the interests and cater to the talents of all the campers!

To be honest, the rest of the day was such a blur. There was zip-lining, rock climbing, wallyball reffing, dodgeball throwing, and lots and lots of dancing! It was such a fun-filled day that it was extra hard to have to say goodbye to our campers and the staff that night. At the same time, knowing that we’ll all be together again in heaven turns those “goodbyes” into “see you later’s.” What a special gift it is to be apart of the same family with people who live across the world! By the time things had finally settled down and all the coaches were in our lounge, I realized just how much I have come to love Egypt. The people at Wadi, campers and staff alike, exceeded every expectation I had! They loved well, they worked hard, they had fun, and I believe God was glorified through all of it! Through the Egyptians, I was reminded of how much fun it is to follow Jesus and the freedom that comes from Him, and for that I could not be more thankful! They will always hold a special place in my heart!

Tonight, I am writing from Rixos Alamein, a resort on the North Coast of Egypt. It is my third and last night here, but it’s safe to say I have already consumed more coffee than every finals weeks combined! Life here is really, very simple. We eat, we nap, we burn (sorry mom), and we laugh a lot! It has been so good to build even deeper relationships with my team while being here! Unfortunately, eight of my teammates left to fly back home earlier this evening (cue the tears) while the remaining seven of us will head back to camp tomorrow to finish out W2 with the A&M team and then coach W4. I know it won’t be the same without the whole team, but I also know that God is going to do some great and mighty things in the next two weeks! I am so excited to see what He has in store for all of us next!

So, to sum up, the last two weeks have been a party and a half. I am so thankful for the time I get to be here and the relationships I have built along the way! There is no other place and no other group of people I would want to spend my summer with! Real quick, I want to shout out everyone who have worked and sacrificed to make this trip possible! You are just as much a part of my team as the other coaches are, and I am so thankful for you! 

With so much love,

Aubrie

 

Kings & Queens of Egypt

Hello! My name is Kylie and this is my first time coming to Egypt! I am coaching basketball with Wyatt and it has been a blast and a half. We have french fries every single day, and for those of you that know me know that potatoes are my favorite food, so I am thriving. Everyday has also brought about its own unique challenges but at the end of the day it’s been such a rewarding experience. 

Today we had a pretty chill morning at majors. We played a shooting game of Around the World, knockout, and finished with a 5 on 5 scrimmage. I only have one girl camper in our major and about 13 boys. Luckily the two of us can keep up with the boys. I have loved getting to know who they are outside of basketball. I get so excited every time I see them in the dining hall and they give me a high five, or say hello, or ask how the rest of my day has been. Even though we’ve only known each other for a few days, you can tell that they really care about me and Wyatt, as well as the people in their cabins and our major. 

For our X Period today we played a game called Kings and Queens. The girls all got together and learned a dance routine and the boys drafted counselors and coaches to play different sports. All of us girl coaches reffed the boys games and my station was Ultimate Frisbee. Considering I have never reffed Ultimate in my life, I think it went pretty well.  The second X Period was called Sherlock Holmes, which is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. The campers walked around to different stations trying to figure out who the “thieves” were. 

The end of the day was so much fun!! Tomorrow is our last full day of camp :): We’ve been getting ready to give out awards to our campers. Every major has 3 main awards- MVP, Most Improved, and I Am Third. For our major we put together little goody bags with candy, medals, stickers, and t-shirts for everyone. I have never met people that love candy as much as I do! I am so proud of how far our campers have come and super thankful for the relationships we’ve built over such a small amount of time. 

God has been teaching me a lot about how we serve a fun God and that I don’t have to take things so seriously. We get to worship God through laughter, playing games, and having dance parties because God created all of those things! It’s been cool to see how far God’s love has gone to rescue His children- from heaven to earth, to the cross, for me from America to Egypt, and eventually to every tribe, tongue, nation, and language (Revelation 5:9-10). What an awesome God we get to serve! I am so thankful to be here and so thankful for your support and that you took the time to read this post! 

God Bless and Hook ‘Em, 

Kylie

 

Pyramid Party

Hi there! My name is Kaylee Gott and this is my second year at Wadi Sports Camp! Each year has been so different, but both have been so exciting with new experiences. It never seems to fail that once I’m here I never want to leave, and once I leave I just want to be back. These people love so deeply and listen intently. They truly care about the people around them. I love coming here and deepening relationships with each of them. 

Usually in the mornings I am coaching tennis with Carrie, but today was our touristy/rest day. We ate breakfast at camp and then loaded the bus to downtown Cairo to see the pyramids. Being in the middle of the desert, you can imagine that it was HOT. We walked around, took thousands of pictures, and avoided attacking vendors at all costs. It was so cool to experience one of the seven wonders of the world.

We walked around The Great Pyramid and ran into a family of camels. Yup. You guessed it. We got on those bad boys. We took a walk around the pyramids for a few minutes and rode to the edge of the hill that overlooked a large part of Cairo. It was such a cool experience that I will never forget. Getting off the camels, however, was not as spectacular…. Our guide forgot to inform us that he was going to lower the camel to the ground (I guess I can’t blame him… he didn’t speak english). The camel suddenly and unexpectedly dropped to his front knees, nearly flinging me off of the front of him and onto his neck. Luckily, one of the workers caught me from the front and Myhre grabbed me from the back. It was a near-death experience, but it was worth it for all the laughs and memories that came along with the trauma. 

After the pyramids, we went to see the sphinx. It was so cool to finally experience these structures that I had always heard about. We walked through a local bazaar area with all kinds of trinkets and souvenirs and then headed to The Mall of Egypt where we got pizza, crepes, and great coffee. A few of us shopped around for a while and Anna went to Ski Egypt, and indoor ski facility within the mall. Apparently this was a popular thing to do in Egypt and I could see why. It was huge! 

After the mall we headed back to Wadi and looked through all of our fun pictures from the day. We then headed outside to join the rest of the camp where they were competing in a decathlon that included swimming, running, jumping rope, burpees, and other fitness tests. It was really cool to see the campers coming together to achieve a goal that they couldn’t do alone. 

After shower time, we headed to the volleyball courts where we ate dinner and watched the championship game between alphas and omegas. I always love these times because it gives us a chance to sit down and have great conversations with new and old friends. Once the game was over, the coaches headed back to our lounge to have a meeting and play some fun games together. To end the night we headed back out to the volleyball courts at 11pm and played king of the court for about 2-3 hours with some of the egyptian staff. Late night bonding activities like this are always the highlights of my days here at Wadi. It’s incredible to see the Lord move in so many ways here. Again, I don’t think I’ll ever leave.

 

Howdy from Egypt!

Howdy! My name is Gabe Munoz and this is my second year to come to Wadi Sports Camp! I am from College Station, Texas and I am an education major at Texas A&M University. 

Let me begin by saying that this is my absolute favorite place on earth. I am so grateful that I was given the opportunity to come back to Cairo with this team from Austin! I had been looking forward to coming back to Egypt since then end of my trip last summer and my heart is so full now that I am back in what feels like home (Hi mom and bro, love and miss you and no I haven’t seen any gorillas).

I am coaching american football with my main man Grady and we are having a blast getting to coach 18 boys. Grady has been awesome to coach with and truly has a heart for the campers. It has been great getting to lead alongside him. A big part of our major and what we have been wanting to teach our boys is that, no matter what team you are on, they are all loving brothers in Christ. Being on Alpha, which is red, and Omega, which is blue, we decided to give them all purple bandanas and sunglasses to wear throughout camp to show unity between the two teams. The most rewarding thing is when we get to actually see that reality everyday throughout camp. Even in the midst of intense competition, they truly respect and love on each other at the end of the day. And if all else fails, one thing they definitely love is candy. SOOOO MUCH CANDY!

It is hard to believe that we have just completed day 6 of camp. The days are very long, but they are FLYING by. It began with coaching majors bright and early and was followed up with some fresh breakfast. We then headed out to ref sessions and I got to ref boys combine with all of the guys on the trip (and Anna- the combine queen). I then got to ref boys Wallyball with Grace and that was really fun! During our pool time today, I participated in a belly flop contest and represented us USA coaches in that (I scored a 9 out of 10). If you know me then you will understand why that is funny. The X period today was super cool! This game was called Clash of Clans. I was told that this game was one of the favorites and I definitely got to experience why. Just like the app, the campers were split up into clans and they were challenged with creating their own living hut and making their own food for dinner. They literally had to build a hut out of sticks and make a fire to grill their own burgers. They did this by having workers, warriors, builders, artists, etc and they all had different jobs that contributed to buying supplies from a store to accomplish it all. It was around a 5 hour game that went through the evening and late into the night, but it was so cool to see how engaged everyone was. It seemed like everyone had a job and played a vital role to their clan that they felt comfortable and were interested in doing. All in all, it was a long day, but it was well worth every drop of sweat. 

As I reflect on camp for the second time, I have two major highlights up to this point. The first is the Cross Walk. Coleman talked about this a little bit in his earlier post, but each cabin of campers was given a giant wooden cross and they had to carry it around the camp for 2 laps. This was such a powerful event and I got to sit and just watch it. The campers were all silent and carried these crosses over their shoulders while making multiple stops along their path to listen to scripture in arabic. They eventually placed the crosses into the ground where holes were dug for them and they stood them up in the middle of camp. As I sat nearby watching, I began tearing up and feeling a heavy push on my heart. The visual image of these campers being for each other and for Jesus and lifting each other up was so powerful for me. The second highlight was the concert that Jacob talked about in his post. I was overwhelmed by just how much these kids need and want Jesus and a big role in that is their leaders at this camp. They were so passionate and energetic and going crazy and the campers followed. The staff here at Wadi is so dedicated to loving these kids and pointing them towards Jesus and it is so encouraging to know that there are some incredible things happening to continue growing the kingdom. I have been unsure about my future job plans for a little while and trying to figure out whether teaching and education were my calling or if youth ministry was the path for me. With these two events, I have truly felt as if Jesus was weighing heavy on my heart for youth ministry. The next generation has so much hope and so much unrealized desire of being wanted by God and I want to help them see that.

I very much appreciate all of the love and support from back home and I continue to ask that you keep this team in your prayers as we head down the backstretch of our time here with W3. Much love to you all! Until next summer…

Gig’em!

Gabe Munoz