SENIOR HIGH CAMP - 2015

July/August/September 2015

What an inspiring journey we have been on, together, this past summer! Our Theme for the 2015 Senior High Camp was, "Jesus…I AM."

We had engaging and encouraging classes built around our hope in Jesus Christ, our Lord. Jesus revealed to the world that He was that "I AM" which promises us so much, and He proclaimed many things about His mission, His nature, and His character in the Gospel of John. Jesus declared: "I am the bread of life," "I am the light of the world," "I am the door of the sheepfold," "I am the good shepherd," "I am the resurrection and the life," "I am the way, the truth, and the life," "I am the true vine." Apostle Terry Patience and Bishops Dan Keleher and Richard Paris led classes on these thoughts. Additionally, we viewed and discussed some lessons from the series, "Overcoming Emotions That Destroy." The lessons centered on understanding the emotion of anger, identified the three masks of anger, revealed that anger is really an indicator that something else is going on deeper in our lives, and shared tools on how to effectively use this emotion for good.

Our evening classes together began with a movie night, "God’s Not Dead." The story is told of an atheist philosophy professor who plans to forego "dusty arguments" in his class, and insists the new students declare that "God is dead." Unable to do this, Josh Wheaton is challenged to defend his faith and prove to the class that "God’s Not Dead." Against all odds, Josh stands up for his faith and takes on the challenge. Throughout the week, we explored lessons from the movie, and what the Scriptures tell us about God’s desire for each of us to take a stand for Him, and acknowledge Him before man.

Activity classes were led by Rebecca Paris. We had the opportunity to make beautifully decorated glass lanterns, create magnetic note boards, and paint some creative crafts. Abby Mercer led our Group Fun! What new and exciting games we played in our fellowship together. Rebecca led the singing (in her signature fun-loving, sometimes crazy style…. "Baby Shark!") at our amazing campfires each night. What rich blessings we shared, whether we were indoors under the light of our candles, or under the canopy of God’s creation. We were encouraged to come before the Lord to seek His blessing, to receive a healing, to receive His guidance, and to receive His instruction as we were presented before the Lord’s throne. We shared in His Spirit in our times of prayers and testimonies, and received the ministry of angels and the presence of the Church of the Firstborn, as well as direction from on High.

We had such a wonderful staff. Our amazing cook, Corwyn Mercer, was assisted by Tessa Woods (who also assisted by Sara Reynolds, Dan Keleher, Stephanie Turner, Drew Coleman, Abby Mercer...and others!); our camp log editors and camp photographers, Samantha Holt and Marci Damon; additional counselors for our young men, Drew Coleman and Josh Madding; and counselors for our young women, Sara Reynolds and Jasmine Buttery; and our camp nurse, Stephanie Turner. Thank you to each of you for your tireless work and dedication to this year’s camp.

From the beginning of camp, your love for each other and the unity you displayed were a wonderful expression of the type of love your Heavenly Father desires for you to share. We were blessed by the Holy Spirit moving amongst us because of your faith and dedication. As the Lord reminded us, "I came to do the will of the Father, because My Father sent me; and my Father sent me that I might be lifted up upon the cross; and after that I had been lifted up upon the cross, I might draw all men unto me." The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, looking for you, desiring to draw each of you back into His presence. Never forget: the voice of the Lord is calling you: "Arise, and get thee into the mountain." May we never stop climbing the mountain to reach the pinnacle, into the waiting arms of our Heavenly Father.

What a joy it was to share this week with each of you. Thank you for allowing me to join you on this journey. May the Lord bless you and keep you, now and forever more.

Your Brother in Christ, Richard Paris