Cagayan de Oro is known as the city of Golden friendship! Golden Friendship; that’s CFO, isn’t it? We all know the feeling when we arrive at The CFO. The warm embrace into the accepting love of Christ as lived and shown by God’s people. Welcome home!!! Here are the 11th International accounts of two CFOers from India, Jesupatham Rajakani and Caroline Godwin.
I thank and praise God for the privilege of attending the CFO International Camp and the CFOI Training. This was my first experience of a CFO International Camp. I do not have words to describe the love, harmony and oneness that I experienced. CFO Campers from sixteen nations were in attendance AND we were as one family.
The times of meditation, worship, talks, creatives, devotion in motion, prayer preparation and prayer groups were meaningful, enjoyable, refreshing… very much like our local CFO camp. The program helped me to draw close to the Lord. We were knit together in the bond of Christ’s love. Though many of us were only just meeting, there were smiles, words of cheer, and deep sharing between us all. The Filipino delegation went out of their way to take good care of us. Such hospitality is the love of God. They taught us the song, “Chuey, chuey… Therefore being justified by faith…” and it is still fresh in my mind and ears!
Though I am a retired teacher, I learned so much from the CFOI Training Session. I enjoyed learning about the CFO Daily Program and all of its intention and purpose. The opportunity to lead Creatives gave me boldness and confidence to be a leader in my home CFO Camp.
At one point, my shoelace came undone. On seeing my struggle to bend down, someone came up to me. He said, “Wait sister, let me tie your shoelace,” and he bent down. When I looked up, it was none other than the CFOI president, Johnson Thomas. This spontaneous act of kindness touched a deep chord within me. It was love made visible. This love filled act of humility was Kingdom Living. I am thankful to God for our President, his wife Shirley, the CFOers, and for the deep experience of the love of God. – Jesupatham Rajakani
I have been a part of The CFO since I was two years old… I was part of the children’s session, had loads of fun as a teenager, lead singing sessions as a youth… now by God’s grace I have given talks… but whenever I heard about experiences of the CFOers in International Camps, I always wanted to be part of one.. Then it happened!! Though there were hurdles with my passport and visa, my desire was granted.
The CFOI Training session held at the Bethania Retreat Center was led by Sue Fairley, Len Marinello, Bryan Holland, Julia Coilpillai, Richard Chemwa, Goel Bagundol, and others from all over the world. I learned so much from them about the depth and breadth of the CFO Program.
Following the CFOI Training session we were taken to the CFO International Camp at Marco Hotel. When I saw people from all over the world entering the hotel, I was overwhelmed by the wonderful opportunity to mingle and share God’s love with each one of them in one place. This beautiful experience is The CFO: the Love of God flowing freely, differences and misunderstandings dissolved, anyone and everyone accepted. We had a ‘heaven on earth’ experience. We were living in the Kingdom.
While the CFO program is the same all over the world, some sessions were led differently and not in the same way as I was accustomed to in the camps I have attended all these years. However, the experience with the international CFOers was unique, rich and inspiring. As part of the South Asia region, which includes, India and Sri Lanka, we were given opportunities to lead in the various sessions.
Hugs were in abundance; real, heartfelt, wonderful hugs that only CFOers can give. Though we were sad to leave our new found brothers and sisters of CFOI, we couldn’t live for ever on the mountain top. We had to return to “the valley” to spread this love, so that “the valley” will start experiencing “the mountain top”!! – Caroline Godwin
More ’11th Installments’ to come!