These challenging times can bring out the best in each of us as we find creative ways to share with one another while living within the current limits set by government or church leaders. In Camp and Retreat Ministries we have been meeting with colleagues across the country to support one another and to share with one another how we are communicating the wonder of camp during this time. In the weeks ahead, we will be sharing with you what we are learning and invite you to find ways to encounter God through scripture and connections to God’s creation and the communities to which you belong.
At the current time we intend to hold our summer camps and retreats. The spring season remains in flux as we follow declarations and guidelines from the states and counties. We are planning to hold the Leadership Training event at Camp Magruder on April 17-19 and the Confirmation Retreat scheduled for April 24-26. We will notify you as soon as possible if there are any changes.
The strong drive toward a way of life or vocation often starts as quiet voice not an angelic pronouncement, perhaps a job that needs to be done, encouragement from loved ones, or a passion.
Finding your calling will likely require a great deal of prayer, patience and trust. And I hope that when you finally find your calling that you find the courage to answer the call.
My spiritual gifts and call have been deeply nurtured at camp. My compassion has been challenged, my desire to serve communion as a pastor started at camp, and my relationship with Jesus and God has been made vulnerable time and time again. May you find that for yourself and your community when you go camping.
I encourage you to let me help you discover your gifts, hear your calling and find the right place for you to serve God with JOY!
In camp and retreat ministry I have found a deep connection to serving God by extending hospitality through Christ and providing sacred space for people of all ages to grow and learn.
lease follow the link below and read an article posted on January 3rd from the United Methodist Church Council of Bishops. The article details some specifics regarding a proposal for the upcoming session of general conference. More information on the proposal will be published in the Conference Connector tomorrow
A response to the proposal from Bishop Elaine JW Stanovsky can be found on the Greater Northwest Area website.
As we look ahead to the entire year before us, we in Camp and Retreat Ministries would like share with you a few stories. These stories will convey our experience of God’s call in our lives, the passion that we hold for this ministry, notable features of each of the sites that makes these places special places to encounter God, impact that the site has had on us or someone we know and then to conclude the year we will be sharing some things that we are excited about for 2021!
As 2019 ends, I want to say thank you for making love, joy, peace and hope possible. You can be proud of the impact that you are making in the lives of children, youth, and adults with your generosity.
You, our donors, volunteers, supporters, and guests are what make Latgawa such a special place, and as staff continue to change over time, your trust in the mission and work is key to future success!
This past week a unique camp and retreat ministry event, The Great Gathering, occurred at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. The Board of Camp and Retreat Ministries of the Oregon-Idaho Conference was represented by 7 people: Vanessa Allen (Executive Chef, Collins Retreat Center) Rev. Dan Benson (Director, Collins Retreat Center, Jayde Dunkerly (Office Manager, Collins Retreat Center), Hope Montgomery (Program Director, Camp Magruder), Troy Taylor (Director, Camp Magruder), Jane Petke (Director, Suttle Lake Camp), and Rev. Todd Bartlett. We were also joined by former Executive Director, Rev. Lisa Jean Hoefner.
Trust is a firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something.
Synonyms for trust are confidence, belief, faith, certainty, assurance, conviction, credence, and reliance.
After three plus years of leading our ministry at Camp Latgawa, Site Director Sam Grainger has submitted his resignation.
Camp provides a safe place to develop friendships and practice social skills. As a Christian camp, our commitment to helping campers develop friendship has an impact beyond camper’s social lives. It facilitates their spiritual growth as they experience what it means to be a part of a Christian community. Such communities provide accountability, resources, and a safe place to deepen their faith.
Instead of, “trust me,” I'm working more to offer, “I trust you,” to the people inside and outside these gates who don't bound joyfully out of the car door at the start of a new adventure, who don't easily notice the potential of connection, who don't know love and kindness as friends.
We are excited for you and your friends to get registered!
Also think about sharing God's love with a young person by inviting and supporting them in attending an amazing, life-changing horse camp!
There are many activities we provide to campers through our programs that encourage them to step beyond their comfort zone and just shy of the “freaking out” zone. This intentional work of entering the place of discomfort allows campers to experience a level of trust in themselves and their abilities and to learn that the intentional Christian community of which they are part for the week will support them no matter what.
Each evening, our summer staff gathers for a time of prayer. We practice different ways to pray as a community throughout the summer. Often during this time, we take turns going around the circle allowing each person to reflect on their day, sharing any "pows" (something that didn't go so well), "wows" (highlights), and "hows" (how God's Spirit was known). This prayer is simple, yet very powerful.
We are grateful for each group who chooses Sawtooth, both church and non-church affiliated. Our sincere hope is that each person who visits us will experience the sacredness of this place and share with others the opportunity to experience the grace of God that Sawtooth has to offer through community and creation.
It is with sadness that I announce that Larry Haley has resigned as the director of Sawtooth United Methodist Camp.
Please know that if you have supported Camp and Retreat ministries in any way, as a camper or guest, volunteer, staff, or donor I want to extend my deepest gratitude.
Camp Magruder’s first Light the Way campaign project is visible at camp! New directional signs were recently installed, and guests are already appreciating the way they’ve guided newcomer’s to find their way at camp. The camp staff is proud of the signs that so many generous donors made a reality.
Living with gratitude ignites a cycle of positivity in our world.
Why do United Methodist Camps think teaching “gratitude” is so important? Because psychological research finds that being grateful, having gratitude, is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness!
ow, I am trying to welcome the energy of the earth into my spirit each morning. I try to smile to the ocean when I see it each afternoon. I am being changed by the gratitude I am offering more generously and frequently to the universe, that it may cultivate wisdom and perspective within me.
Beyond the gift itself and our feeling of appreciation, there is the knowledge that something other than ourselves, greater than ourselves, gifted us.
For sixty years Crook County has had Outdoor School, fifty-four at Suttle Lake. The big yellow buses still depart full of exhausted sixth graders. Each camper takes with them a most important gift, memories. Camp is creating memories which encourage our children to care of themselves and others in community. Within the United Methodist Camp Association, we are always working to be people of grace, accepting all who come. We collectively become communities of grace, accomplishing great things we could not have done on our own.
I believe camp can be an experience to help others open the door to Jesus Christ. Now there is the real, community in the world, and in fact the universe!
So, when I answer people about what it will be like if I leave camp, I often reference my hope for building this community out there, too. I see intentional community building as a counter-cultural act that is a form of resistance. I see community as a way to change the world we live in. To live in community, we may have to opt for something less convenient, or at the very least less conventional, but the payoff of experiencing deeper and significantly fulfilling relationships is much more rewarding.
Today, we live in a world that lets us connect to more people and over greater distances than ever before. But those connections may be more superficial due to both the number of relationships and the limits of technology. We encourage people to take time away to form deep community, steady community, shaped by spending more time physically present with one another.
Because community is essential well-being, we understand that the cost of getting there is worth it. We may not like the experience in the midst of the chaos but the stories that we get to tell later of meeting the challenge says something that we like about ourselves and the community of which we are a part: together with one another we are strong and better off.
My hope and dream for Camp Latgawa, and Camp and Retreat Ministries as a whole, is that we may offer acceptance to each of our guests, freeing them from the stress or anxiety of not feeling welcome. I believe that our camps and programs have been set aside as a holy place, for ALL people, regardless of where they are in life.
Acceptance, understood as an embodiment of compassionate curiosity towards ourselves and others, makes space for others to be seen and valued as they are regardless of how in-line it is with our own understandings.
United Methodist Camp and Retreat Centers are a sacred place of acceptance!
Creating accepting and loving communities at camp is a powerful vehicle for God's spirit to work.
"What are the key factors of the camp experience that lead to growth in outcomes like Christian belief, faith relevance, and self-confidence? We know camp makes a difference, but why? Researcher Dr. Jake Sorenson of the Effective Camp Project breaks it down. Check out the research analysis and consider ways to emphasize these factors in your camp program."
This grace of acceptance offered to me by the church, through camp and retreat ministry, continues to inspire me in my work and life. Through these next few weeks as we focus on Acceptance, I hope that you are encouraged to offer and/or receive this wonderful gift
Like "Camp & Retreat Ministries" on Facebook! Reflections on values with Camp & Retreat Ministries Find Joy in your Mountaintop Experience Value 3: Joy By Tanner Morton, Communications Associate for Camp and Retreat Ministries The summer after...
Our journey at 1000 Hours Outside is to provide insight into a different way to do family life, where nature time is often chosen before other activities. Through highlighting the litany of benefits that accompany breathing in outdoor air we hope to encourage and motivate your family to make nature time a priority.
I would like to invite you to join us this summer at the camp you call home and experience the joy that abounds at camp!
We encourage you, dear reader, to look for joy in one of the simplest of things, food. To care for yourself in new and engaging ways as you prepare food for yourself and for others, remembering that how we share with others and consider their needs is one of the most holy acts, for together we can experience joy around the table so that our lives may be abundant.
One of the many ways we experience such profound happiness at camp, is through the beauty of nature and the time we are blessed to spend enjoying it. Here is an article published on April 10th, speaking of the benefits in spending time outdoors.
We should seek lives filled with JOY! The JOY of knowing God is in control and will never abandon us. We are called to share that JOY with a struggling world! People need the JOY of God’s promise of eternal life; the JOY of knowing that even in our darkest times, God is always with us!
Reflections on values with Camp & Retreat Ministries Giving Joy a Place in All of Our Daily Practices Value 3: Joy By Troy Taylor, Director at Camp Magruder If you have never poured your whole self into a game of dizzy bat, you may not know what ...
We imagine a faith where joy has a place in all of our practices. We want to feel joy as we sing, while we pray together, when we hear a message that feels inspired by the Lord, when we are accepted as we are, when we treat each other with love that defies understanding.
For me, joy is a gift that is available to us each day. I believe that, for most of us, the experience of joy is a matter of choice. While I am aware that joy can come from a spontaneous surprise in our lives, the choice remains as to whether or not we will accept these gifts, even on days that seem joyless.
Each week, in 3-4 pages, McLaren invites us to revisit biblical principles for living. You’ll receive blog posts to expand your study, with reflections and prayers and a place for comments and conversation. As we journey together, we’ll add opportunities for conversation, further study and action."
The blog post for this week, titled We Make the Road by Walking, was written by Executive Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries, Todd Bartlett.
United Methodist camps are a sanctuary of hope. Feelings of hopefulness are contagious at camp whether you are there as a guest, a leader, a volunteer or a paid staff person. In these sacred spaces, hope is abundant and visible! It gives you the feeling that there is something more, much bigger, something greater!