CELEBRATION OF THE NATIONS: MILESTONE IN THE SOURTHWEST

By , May 10, 2002

From April 30th through May 5th, Operation Compassion sponsored a weeklong dedicatory event entitled Celebration of the Nations. The event was a milestone in a two year planning process whereby the Navajo Nation and the other twenty-two Indian Nations of the United States would have a Dream Center ministering to their specific needs. The Celebration comprised of seven specific events during the week.

Reverend Floyd Lawhon held a revival in the Southwest Indian Ministries Campground Gym from Tuesday through Friday. Each night the crowds swelled until there was standing room only. Each night under a heavy anointing, Reverend Lawhon delivered a timely message and spent hours ministering to individual needs in the altar.

At the same time revival was happening for adults, the children were enjoying Kid’s Kamp under the direction of Jimmy Jones from Christ Central Mission Station in Columbia, SC. Each evening the children were challenged to make right choices in their world. Each child was inundated with prizes and toys every night.

Friday saw the arrival of Leonard Albert, International Director of the Lay Department and Ray H. Hughes, Jr. Assistant International Director and their Life Builders Matthew 25 Men. These men came to the Navajo Nation to assist with the repair and renovation of widow homes on the reservation. Twenty-three men came and were assigned a Pastor and went back to their church on the reservation for the weekend.

On Saturday, Jimmy Jones and his ministry team put together a carnival for kids of all ages. There was cotton candy, snow cones, inflatable rides and many others activities for every to enjoy. Toys and prizes flowed like water through the crowd of child and adults. Everyone was have such fun that no one wanted it to end.

Each night and during the carnival, Navajo women, joined by volunteers, cooked hot meals for everyone. Over 2,000 meals were cooked and served some nights as late as 11:00 p.m.

Following the carnival, everyone moved over to the First American Dream Center for the dedication. Hundreds of cars wound there way through the narrow roads and parked in an open field by the Dream Center. Pastors, laypersons, Church of God Departmental Leaders and special guests gathered in and around the Dream Center for the formal act of dedication and prayer.

After everything was said and done, Pastors lined their vehicles on one side of the Dream Center and Navajo families lined up on the other side. For the next four hours, Operation Compassion personnel and Life Builders Matthew 25 Men loaded vehicle after vehicle with 35 pound food boxes, frozen chicken, bottled water and juices, chips, tortillas and candy. Navajo families were blessed with food boxes and Navajo Pastors were blessed, not only personally but their churches were blessed for the future, with food boxes as well.

To round out the weeklong celebration, Operation Compassion received a semi loaded with doors, window, and trim molding. On Sunday and Monday afternoons, Pastors came and picked up the building supplies they needed to finish their homes, churches and those of their neighbors as well.

During the week, the following was given away:    2,053 hot meals
1,200 25# food boxes
15,000# of chicken
10 pallets of bottled water
10 pallets of juice
10 pallets of clothing
5 pallets of tortillas
5 pallets of chip
1 semi of doors, windows, molding

Anyone interested in supporting financially, donating products or providing a corporate lead may contact:

Operation Compassion
Dr. John D. Nichols, President
David Lorency, International Field Director
Tim Burdashaw, Communications & Development

114 Stuart Road, NE Suite 370
Cleveland, TN 37312
423.728.3932 Office
423.728.3958 Fax
www.operationcompassion.org

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