The Gospel through Fishing:
A Testimony from Mark Barnes
Mark Barnes has been a part of CBM’s founding camp (Camp Gilead) since 2007. What a blessing it is to partner with other believers and missionaries to teach children the gospel and get them excited about missions. Last summer alone (2019) God used the ministry of Camp Gilead to lead 81 children to the Lord. One unique way they reach kids with the gospel is through fishing camps! Here is a testimony from Mark Barnes of how God has used him to help Camp Gilead reach hundreds of kids with the gospel of Christ every summer.
My name is Mark Barnes. My wife Terry and I are with Ethnos360. We served in Papua New Guinea for 21 years. We joined New Tribes Mission in April of 1984. Two years ago New Tribes Mission changed its name to Ethnos360. In 2007, Terry and I were invited to Camp Gilead, in Polk City, Florida, by Gordon Hurlbert. We were asked to be the camp missionaries for the week during the middle school camp. We loved the week we were there. We taught 4 sessions on reaching the unreached, unevangelized people groups in the most remote places on the earth. We taught the kids songs in another language, and we still meet kids today that have grown up that remember those songs and our presentations from Camp Gilead. Terry and I were involved in teaching missions at Camp Gilead for the next 6 years.
In 2013, Camp Gilead asked me to participate in the Hooked on Fishing camp that they were going to start on Lake Helene at the camp. I took the instructional course from the FLorida Fish & Wildlife Commission to be able to teach Hooked on Fishing at Camp Gilead. I team-taught the educational material with Juan Kononovus. I also taught all the Bible lessons and used the Creation to Christ model that we used on the mission field to teach God’s word. We taught three fishing camps over three years. Hooked on fishing was the beginners’ camp. Overnight fishing camp was our intermediate camp. Then we did two advanced saltwater camps at Saint Petersburg, Florida. We were blessed to see campers trust Christ as their Savior during these fishing camps. I am still involved with the Hooked on Fishing camps at Camp Gilead in 2019/2020. We are only doing the Hooked on Fishing and the overnight camps now.
I was asked to join the Board of Camp Gilead in 2018. Now I serve the camp as a Board Member, as well. I am blessed to be able to be a part of Camp Gilead and to help guide the staff and help in ways that fit my gifting.
Mark Barnes is a missionary with Ethnos360 and a Board Member at CBM’s Camp Gilead. To learn more about Camp Gilead’s summer camp ministry and their fishing camp go to [https://www.campgilead.com].