Rain doesn’t dampen the camp experience

by Anne Travis

How many of us consider our camp and retreat ministry as a way through which our young people learn about our connectional system? I bet almost every one of our 925 churches have at least one person who has attended a Holston Conference camp during his or her lifetime – as a camper, counselor, or retreat participant. Many of our young people meet campers from other churches – both inside and outside their districts – and have their first experience with our connectional system through our camps.

As I sit in my office on this stormy, rainy day, I fondly remember my own "rainy day
" camp activities as a child. I am aware that literally hundreds of young people are enjoying rainy day activities at our camps today.

In a recent camp evaluation form, a parent wrote the following about her children's experiences: "Thank you for giving them a camp memory that will last much longer than a week and for reminding them how exciting it is to serve and love God. You would never know it rained almost all week!"

Another parent wrote of her child, "Even through the rain, she had a wonderful time. She always comes home so happy and full of joy in her heart."

Even in the rain, our campers learn to love and serve God. They learn through relationships with their counselors and other campers and by experiencing God in the outdoors. They learn by being connected with each other and with God. Surely they come away from camp with an understanding that their church is not the only church, but rather part of a larger whole. Surely they come away from camp with an understanding that God is part of their relationships, too.

Many of our Holston pastors will share their own personal camp experiences in one of our conference camps. Young persons' lives are changed every summer through our camp program.

The camp experience that Holston Conference provides is outstanding. Our camp directors and counselors are well-trained, and these individuals put their hearts and souls into providing the best possible experience for each camper. They provide positive role models for our young campers. They not only teach about God's love, but they demonstrate God's love.

Haven't been to camp lately? You should drop by one of our camps. Even if it is pouring rain, you will come away feeling better for having been there. You will appreciate the connection that supports our camps, and you will leave knowing – as our young people are learning from this summer's camp theme – that God rocks!


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Response to Racism

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