Camp Daniel—More Than Just Summer Camp

By Kristen Burke   •   August 8, 2006

Eleven-year-old Mallory Brown already sounds like an old pro at evangelism.

“When I got the Dare to Be a Daniel booklet,” Mallory says, “I decided that my friends who didn’t believe in God needed to be protected, because they had freak accidents happen to them.”

One friend broke her arm. Another was in a car accident. A third was rescued from a burning car after a fire truck hit it during a seven-car accident. A fourth friend nearly drowned. Mallory felt they would be open to talking about God.

“I chose to tell them because they seemed like the right people,” she explains. “Not only did I want to tell them, but they also wanted to learn about God.”

Mallory was able to win four of her friends to Christ. “I told them what sin was because they didn’t know,” she says. “I told them what they have to do to put their trust in Jesus and that they have to pray to God about what’s happening throughout their lives.”

After Mallory led her friends in prayer to accept Christ, she saw changes in their lives right away–they even started telling other people about Jesus.

This kind of spiritual maturity may seem unusual in an 11-year-old student, but Mallory is one of more than 122,000 children across the United States who has received a Dare to Be a Daniel evangelism kit, designed to teach children ages 9 to 14 how to share their faith in Christ with their friends. She was also one of 75 children who attended the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s Camp Daniel evangelism training camp, July 17-21.

Students ages 11 to 14 who had already completed the Dare to Be a Daniel program came to Camp Daniel for intensive evangelism training with BGEA evangelism training staff. The kids got to do typical camp activities such as hiking, making crafts and horseback riding–but this was no ordinary camp.

Each night, special speakers highlighted the importance of one of the four points of Dare to Be a Daniel. The students practiced using the “Steps to Peace With God” tract, sharing their salvation testimonies and talking to others about Christ.

Zac Bianco, 12, was eager to learn more so he could follow up with a friend he had already witnessed to.

“We were just playing basketball,” Zac says. “I was witnessing to my neighbor. I asked, ‘So, do you believe in God?’ He was like, ‘Well, kind of.’ He just really didn’t know. He said, ‘I pray sometimes, but …’ I just started talking to him about how God loves him and how even when you’re in a hard time, God can help you through it.”

Zac answered some of his neighbor’s other questions, but the neighbor didn’t make a decision for Christ that day.

“I’m just gonna keep witnessing to him,” Zac says. “I know he’s really thought about it. I can tell just by how he acts.”

Memorizing the Dare to Be a Daniel Bible verses made it a lot easier to be confident when talking about Jesus, Zac adds. In fact, witnessing to his neighbor was a lot easier than he expected.

Will he do it again when he gets home from camp? Zac has no doubts.

“I know I will.”

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