“I would like to ask a question of the House. If your faith development has been impacted in some way by camping ministry please raise your hand.” My non-scientific estimation is well over 70% of the House of Bishops had their hands raised.
Through the years I have done this activity in a variety of settings with both lay and ordained leaders in the Church. Consistently, well over half of the crowd indicate that being involved with camp has played a significant role in their faith journey. This is followed either by college or youth ministry, with specific emphases on programs such as Teens Encounter Christ (TEC).
Most of you are more than aware of my own personal story. Suffice it to say that if my childhood priest and mother had not conspired to take me to camp at 10 years old, with respect to God’s grace, I would not be married to such an incredible person, have such deep, life-long friendships, and would not be serving as your Bishop. Simply put, my experience at camp was completely transformative.
We have been blessed in ECMN to have a long history with camping ministry. Cass Lake Episcopal Camp provided a wonderful camping experience for generations. For the last number of years the Episcopal Youth Music Camp has been very successful. We are now moving into the next chapter of ECMN camping: Episcopal Youth Quest Camp, which will take place July 12-18 and is designed for youth in grades 6-8 with a peer ministry track for youth in grades 9-12.
Do you know a middle school student who could benefit from attending Quest Camp? You never know the life-changing impact it could have!