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April 20th 2018
Last night I switched on the tele to catch the tail-end of the ABC program Four Corners. They happened to be reporting on their investigation into how Cambridge Analytica had exploited a loop-hole in Facebook’s business practices and policies to scoop off data from millions of Facebook users. This data as it turns out has been used to influence voter’s decisions and most likely the outcome of the 2016 US presidential election. The Four Corners segment titled, ‘Democracy, Data and Dirty Tricks’, looked back on how the scandal unfolded and how seemingly easy, it seems, campaigns can be manipulated.
 
This investigation had come about to some extent, because one (now former) employee of Cambridge Analytica, Christopher Wylie, had decided what he and his employer were doing was morally and ethically wrong  - a whistle-blower. Christopher has shared some amazing insights into the inner workings of the social media world, “Computers are better at understanding who you are as a person than even your coworkers or your friends. There is a lack of awareness. It is coercive… I can anticipate what are your mental vulnerabilities, what cognitive biases might you display in certain situations... and I can exploit that.” And further, “But a computer sees all kinds of sides of you. And so we can get better than human-level accuracy at predicting your behaviour.” He said the company was so effective because people had no idea they were potentially being brainwashed based on their own data.
 
WOW WOW WOW!
 
I see very close parallels between this and another campaign – a coercive, spiritual battle - going on for our hearts, minds and souls. In Ephesians 6:12, Paul warned the Ephesian Christians, “We’re not waging war against enemies of flesh and blood alone. No, this fight is against tyrants, against authorities, against supernatural powers and demon princes that slither in the darkness of this world, and against wicked spiritual armies that lurk about in heavenly places.
 
Ellen White has something to say about this too, “Satan is watching every avenue whereby he can take advantage to enter with his specious temptations to spoil the soul.”
 
And what does Paul suggest as the antidote? Verse 13, And this is why you need to be head-to-toe in the full armour of God: so you can resist during these evil days and be fully prepared to hold your ground.” Here’s Ellen White again, “Satan well knows that all whom he can lead to neglect prayer and the searching of the Scriptures, will be overcome by his attacks.”
 
So what practical steps can we take against such deceptions - even social media? Instead of reaching for your devise first thing in the morning to check your social media status (or last thing at night), reach for your Bible or Bible app instead, open up the Word and connect with God – the only One who can be fully trusted.

Secondly, join a Life Group or small group for spiritual support, encouragement and nurture. Or if there’s not one in your area, start one. If you’re not sure where to start or how to start, or want to find out if there’s a Life Group in your area contact us here at VicYouth and we’ll do our best to connect you –
 vicyouth@adventist.org.au  ph 9264 7740.

Finally, brothers and sisters, draw your strength and might from God. Put on the full armour of God to protect yourselves from the devil and his evil schemes. Ephesians 6:10, 11







Phil Hyland
VicYouth Director



 

ADRA Connections Trip
ADRA have planned a trip to Cambodia from the 9th to the 19th December.
For more information please see:

Cambodia Project Brief
Victoria/Tasmania Conference Trip
Big Camp 2018, if you missed out or would like to see the sermons presented see below link:
Big Camp 2018
MINISTRY TOUR GIPPSLAND

The Ministry Tour starts in Gippsland at the Traralgon Church this Sabbath.  So if you live local, come along and you will get to meet our Conference Directors who will share resources, information and training opportunities for Gippsland.

First Aid Course is on Sunday April 29th at the Conference Office.  Registration closes on April 23rd so for more information or to register see First Aid Course.

If you live in the Mildura area, we welcome you all to the upcoming Mildura Youth Rally held at Henderson College, 807 Cowra Avenue.

For more details see facebook event:
Get Lit

 

Tell your friends, gather your teams, practice your dunking technique and click the link below to secure your place!

ADRA & VicYouth Basketball

For more information, click the link or contact Tournament Director Will Tai Tin - 
willtaitin@adventist.org.au.          Profits will support  ADRA Connections and local projects.

Pathfinder Expedition
We look forward to having you at this year's Pathfinder Expedition - "Mission Possible" - in the Wombat State Forest.  Keep a lookout for Manual 2 which is to be released shortly.
Have you started planning for Stormco this year?
Olive Turner and Emanuel Millen are modelling the new Stormco t-shirts so if you would like to order contact us now.
If you do want to find out more about Stormco we have a training day on the 24th June.  More details to come.
Adventurer Camporee

Sep 28-30 is going to be an excellent weekend! Adventurer Camporee.  Start making your plans to bring your club and family now!!

In its second-year Fun Mudder is only getting bigger and better! This is going to be a great event to bring your Pathfinder Club and community connections to.  Stay tuned at Leadership Weekend for more information.  We look forward to seeing you at Fun Mudder!

Don't miss this opportunity! The AUC Pathfinder Camporee that only takes place every four years will be right on our doorstep this year.  Molesworth is only 1 hour and 49 minutes from Melbourne's city center.  Join 3500 Pathfinders from around Australia for an experience of a lifetime.
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VicYouth · 141 Central Road · Nunawading, VIC 3131 · Australia

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