All of the cabins are shuttered, the wood piles refilled, the canoes and pontoons put away. Camp season in Western North Dakota is over for another year. This year, your four outdoor ministry sites, Badlands Ministries in Medora, Camp of the Cross Ministries in Garrison, Metigoshe Ministries in Bottineau, and Upper Missouri Ministries in Epping helped 4,902 campers grow in their faith in the midst of adventure and fellowship.
While each outdoor ministry site is unique, they all work to emphasize service to others as an important part of their programming. One way the four outdoor ministry sites in Western North Dakota accomplish this is through providing service opportunities for campers to be a part of. This past summer, some of the camps partnered with Lutheran World Relief (LWR) to focus on making fleece tie blankets to be sent to people around the world in need. Together, 167 fleece tie blankets were made to be sent on to LWR, while 48 blankets were shared locally with social services, homeless shelters, and domestic violence crisis center. A total of $3,000 of grant money was received through Lutheran World Relief and Thriven Community Action Teams. This money greatly supported the purchase of fleece and also provided shipping costs for the project.
It is amazing to see what young people can do! While this service opportunity for campers in Western North Dakota provided an opportunity to serve one’s neighbor; there are numerous ways campers learn to serve during a week of camp. Campers help with work projects like cleaning the dishes and raking a beach. Campers also learn about and care for God’s creation by picking up garbage, helping out in a garden, recycling, learning to compost, etc. Campers might even get opportunities to visit local nursing homes and share the love of God with others through song.
There are many aspects that make Bible camp an experience to remember and look forward to each summer. Opportunities to serve God and neighbor only enrich the already powerful and faith-filled experience.
Submitted by: Melissa Kornkven (Metigoshe Ministries)