When our May issue rolls around every year, I get jealous. Not the mean, green kind of jealousy that can be harmful. More of a, “man, I wish I had that when I was a kid!” kind of envy of today’s Moravian youth.
You see, across the Northern and Southern Provinces, kids have a unique opportunity to spend a week (or maybe more) combining nature, fun and faith. They go to the woods and come back feeling uplifted, connected and enlightened. That’s something I did not have the opportunity to do as a youngster.
The weeks at Camp Workcoeman, the Boy Scout camp in my hometown, are a source of some of my fondest memories of being a kid. But I often wonder what that experience would have been like with a faith component built in—if I was there to build my spirit along with building campfires, to breathe the Holy Spirit along with the fresh air, to journey on my walk of faith along with those walks in the woods.
When I talk with those involved in Moravian camping ministries, whether as counselors, program leaders, former staffers, those who’ve attended or today’s kids, their sense of enthusiasm rubs off on me. To a person, the opportunity to spend a week on the mountain/by the lake/in the woods with friends and faith leaders—or the memory of doing so in years past—comes through as an experience not to be missed. And when I’ve made visits to Camp Hope during the past few years, I have seen firsthand how camp helps kids grow.
In this issue of the Moravian, you’ll learn more about what’s happening at the Moravian Church’s camps here in the U.S. and Canada. As you do, I think you’ll agree that the opportunities presented sound like a great way to spend part of a summer.
I know in my case, they make me want to pack my hiking boots, my guitar and maybe some bug repellent and head for the hills. I’m actually hoping to be involved with camps in North Carolina and New Jersey this summer.
And then I’ll be able to replace that green of envy with the green of the woods and truly understand why so many people are so dedicated to Moravian camping.