Archive for the ‘Excited for Camp’ Category

Staff Saturday: Ray Charles

Greetings friends – this past Saturday was crazy busy here at camp.  It was Spring Work Day, Open House and the Annual Association Meeting.  There was so much going on I couldn’t post this note from Ray.  Here’s what she says:

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Hi campers!

So excited to spend another summer up on the hill with you all! Last year was just too much fun so I had to make my way back up from Ohio to camp again this summer. As the weather has started warming up I can’t stop thinking about the fun Wet’n’Wild Wednesdays we had last summer. From the baked oatmeal, to the slip’n’slide, then the cookout complete with s’mores—that day stands out as one of my favorite parts of the week. I’m excited to see again those I got to know last year and also meet some new and awesome friends! I’m sure we’ll all learn something new this summer too, whether it’s from shelter chats, fireside, or from all the fantastic people Jesus brings to camp. God’s got great adventures planned for this summer and I hope to see you all there!
Ray Charles

Tuna Tuesday: Life to the full

I was writing in my journal this morning after reading a booked called Enjoy the Silence. Great book. Geared toward teens but relevant to adults.

In my reflection, I was thinking about the fact that last summer was our second most attended summer ever. And that high attendance came after a spring of virtually no advertising and very little marketing. We were focused on the cabin renovations and simply being able to use the building in time for summer.

Any increase in attendance couldn’t be traced to communications work done that winter and spring. I believe it was God who brought the increase. For me, this is a reminder that it is God who sustains all things (and even lets us partner sometimes in this effort – like when we tend our gardens). It’s God who provides the air we breathe and the life we were born into.

Pray with me that we will remember this each day and that once again, this summer, God will bring many campers so he may inspire them and encourage their hope and faith. We are told that faith is what pleases God. And with God we have life to the full.

To another summer, experiencing life to the full!

Tuna

 

Staff Saturday: Frodo (and a Lamb)

frodo and a lambHello My Dear Campers!

This is Frodo here, reporting in that I will be seeing all of you at Bethany Birches Camp this summer! I hope you are planning to return with me and are ready to enjoy some of our favorite camp craziness. Every day I think about being up on the hill at camp and enjoying my very favorite day of the week.. wet n’ wild Wednesday. I think about soaping up my belly and running towards the slip n’ slide, and then going down to the pond for some jump competition and of course an amazing cookout. There is no better way to spend a summer day than up at Bethany Birches with all of you! I have been practicing up on my guitar skills every day too, getting ready to have a summer filled with music. I can’t wait to sing to Jesus, share His amazing love, and have an amazing time with each of you!

Until we meet again!

Frodo Birches

Les Miserables & Camp: Tuna Tuesday

So Cheeks and I watched Les Miserables on video the other night.  It’s a classic story and the most recent version done on video is very good.  As I was watching the scene when Javert decides to drown himself, I realized one of many reasons to learn to love our enemies – so we don’t drown ourselves!

Here’s what he says in the song that made me think of this:

Da.ned if I’ll live in the debt of thief
Da.ned if I’ll yield at the end of the chase
I am the law and the law is not mocked
I’ll spit his pity right back in his face
There is nothing on Earth that we share
It is either Valjean or Javert!

Full Lyrics


In short, he can’t handle the fact that his enemy, Jean Valjean, loved him enough to help him in his time of need (Valjean gains permission to release him from behind enemy lines – he would have been most likely killed had Valjean not done this).  He can’t stand this kindness so much that he decides to drown himself.

An article from Wikipedia explains the narrative this way:

“Javert wanders the streets in emotional turmoil: his mind simply cannot reconcile the image he had carried through the years of Valjean as a brutal ex-convict with his acts of kindness on the barricades. Now, Javert can be justified neither in letting Valjean go nor in arresting him. For the first time in his life, Javert is faced with the situation where he cannot act lawfully without acting immorally, and vice versa. Unable to find a solution to this dilemma, and horrified at the sudden realization that Valjean was simultaneously a criminal and a good person—a conundrum which made mockery of Javert’s entire system of moral values—Javert decides to resolve the dissonance by drowning in the river Seine; his body is later found.”

Here’s my point – Jesus’ teaching to love our enemies is for our own good.  Whether we drown ourselves in an actual river or a metaphorical river, hate causes deep inner turmoil.

One of our goals at camp is to build a community of love each week, each summer and over the lifetime of the camp, with all who participate.  This helps each of us learn to love those we otherwise might not get along with.  In learning to love those hard to love, we become free from hate.  Just one of the many things Jesus saves us from.

Tuna

Staff (spritual) Saturday: Sonny

Are you guys ready?!?!

Campers of 2013; are you READY?!?!

I am! I am so thrilled to be coming back to camp, for the WHOLE summer!! Spending time in the beautiful mountains of VT, leaving the flatlands and humidity of Delaware. I am so ready to meet all you new campers and reconnect with the campers I met last summer! To be back in the woods, on the hill, in the tree house or the lake or the pavi; is more exciting than any of the plans little ol’ Delaware could offer. Why? -Because there is no place like camp.

Why do I love camp so much anyway? Why am I traveling all the way from Delaware, by train, for camp? I have been coming to camp for years! The thought of summer without camp, isn’t summer! Growing and learning about God, getting messy, singing, slip n’ sliding, and so much more! The atmosphere at Bethany Birches is acceptance and fun. Not making new friends is IMPOSSIBLE!! Coming to camp now as an Assistant Counselor (rather than intern) will be much more fun because I get to meet ALL of you!!

Don’t miss out on all the spectacular fun and silliness of camp this year!! I hope to see you there; I can’t wait to meet you!

-Sonny

Mt. Washington & The Life of Faith: Tuna Tuesday

So yesterday I hiked up the back side of Mt. Washington with some friends.  We wanted to get some late season skiing in!

I have a cool GPS map but there’s an error with the file.  If you could see the map you’d notice that we were all over the place! After hiking up, we walked to different areas of the mountain to see how the skiing was over there (and then over there… and over there). We did this because we didn’t know the mountain very well and wanted to find out where the sweet spots were.

Tuna and Friends Mt WashingtonThis is not so different than the life of faith.  For example, Jesus tells us in the Bible that he is “the way, the truth and the life…”  For many years, it was hard for me to understand what that meant.  I hadn’t experienced him enough to know that what he said is true or understand how it worked.   I hadn’t found out where the good skiing was, yet, so to speak.  In fact, yesterday I had to trust that there was good skiing up there somewhere.  And I trusted that there was because many people have said so, and, I had been there a few times before.

Tuna and friends on mt washingtonWhen we got down, one friend mentioned that he feels like he knows the mountain much better now.  (He’d better – we spent 10 hours walking around on top of it!)  When following Jesus, in faith, it feels very much like this.  A little like wondering around for a while on top of a mountain.  And, we get to know him better after spending time with him or trying out something he said.  Then we come to a knowledge of him.  Knowledge of him (or of the mountain) is beyond faith in him (or trust that the mountain will have some sweet spots).

Just one of the many reasons I’m excited for Summer Camp 2013.  Another chance to explore the life of faith and come to know Jesus.  Please share if you too are excited for camp (or have been up Mt. Washington in the spring!).

What about you – what’s the life of faith like for you?

Tuna

 

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Spiritual Saturday: Buoy is Excited for Camp

Dear campers,

I’m coming back to BBC and I am excited!!  I was unable to be at camp all summer last year and that has made me even more excited for group games, GAGA, the water trampoline, Wet n’Wild Wednesdays, the slip n’slide, cooking over a fire, and so much more. Fun is everywhere at camp!

Along with the fun I am looking forward to the serious relationships that camp builds. My hope is that I can grow the relationships that I have started already while creating new, meaningful, ones with all the campers I am going to meet for the first time this summer. I have learned so much in the last year and a half since I was last at camp and I can hardly wait to share what God has been doing in my life. I also look forward to all the things that you all as campers will teach me.

All of you campers should come back too because everyone at camp is important. That is another reason that I could not stay away from camp for another year. Everyone is welcome at camp. I have never been another place that was as welcoming/accepting as camp.

You should also come to camp this year because we have one of the coolest themes ever. Mission Possible! I think I have a little bit of a bias opinion because the theme relates to one of my favorite bible verses, Philippians 4:13 “for I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.” You should come back to camp because we can do everything through Christ so who knows what might happen this summer. Whatever mission God give us is possible. The theme also makes me think of mission impossible one of my favorite games to play at camp.

Lastly I know I will not be alone there is a group of staff coming to camp that I am sure are great.  I have already started to ask that Christ give me the strength that it takes to play games and talk about God, so that we can make this summers’ mission possible. I’m excited to see all of your smiling faces at camp summer.

Buoy

Making Friends

It’s Tuna Tuesday in our Excited for Camp Campaign.

I’m excited for camp because it’s when camp comes alive.  It’s when people are singing all the time. People are [video_lightbox_youtube video_id=”N3bzb-fjVG4&rel=0″ width=”640″ height=”480″ anchor=”getting messy”] all the time (then cleaning up).  It’s when I get to run out of the office to play group games or four square or pretend to be really angry about something which sets the stage for a Mission Impossible skit for the coming night.  It’s a time when my faith in Jesus is stretched, challenged and encouraged.  It’s a time when I make new friends.

That brings me to my next point – making friends.  In her blog post from 2011, Pepper talked about the relationship building that happens here at camp.  And it’s one of my favorite things!  Ever since college, I learned the value and joy of community.   And at Bethany Birches, we talk a lot about building community.  Particularly a community of love.  The kind that lets us see God smiling at us.  God is often near, it’s just that we often have a hard time seeing him.  And somehow, at camp, as we build a community of love together, we can see God more often.

I hope you’ll join us this summer to make some new friends and hopefully, see God.  He’s often not far…

The Excited for Camp Campaign on Facebook

We’re so excited for camp that we decided to find a way to express our excitement online.  Why online? We don’t see enough of the BBC Community in every-day life.  Also, we’re hoping you’ll share your excitement about camp with your friends and posting stuff online is one way we can help you share.

Here’s what we’re planning for Facebook:

  • Memory Mondays
  • Tuna Tuesdays
  • Are You Excited?
  • Thursday’s Trivia
  • Fan of the Week
  • Spiritual Saturdays 

Each day, we’ll post that day’s content on Facebook and some of it on the blog.  And, as we find more ways to share our excitement, we’ll do that (email, Twitter, text, video)!

For example, the first Memory Monday is on the BBC Facebook page right now!  It looks like this:

memory monday fb

There will be some prizes and discounts along the way, shout-outs and highlights.

Will you join us from now till summer camp, online AND offline, sharing with your friends your excitement for camp?

It won’t be long now… 2 months to go.

From Tuna, Cheeks and Sparkles… we’re excited!