Ten Days Out…Ten Reasons for Thanksgiving

Our Senior High camp ended ten days ago, and over the last ten days, we’ve been giving thanks for the these  ten gifts we received during the week of camp.IMG_2180

1. Voices raised in song:   During chapel each morning, and at each evening’s campfire and compline, the voices of our campers spilled out over Flathead Lake.  Teenagers are stereotypically passive and resentful, but our Senior Higher campers challenged the norm by engaging enthusiastically…even as we joined in ‘The Hippo Song.”

2.  Hard questions and engaging discussions:   Even though we set aside two hours each day for group reflection and conversation, campers complained that they didn’t have enough time for conversation!  During “Life Together Time” each day, our campers eagerly explored the ways that Scripture and the tradition of the Church challenged them, gave life to them, and raised questions for them.

3.  Sailing excursions: P1010744 Thanks to the help of Phil Healey of Taylor Sailmakers, we got our sailboat into the water this season, and enjoyed several beautiful sailing trips  during the week of Senior High Camp.  We also learned some new sailing skills.P1010747






4.  Ultimate Frisbee:  We played lots of Ultimate during Senior High camp, but the fabled Staff v. Camper match-up was a highlight of the week.  Bishop Brookhart led us onto the playing field behind the Episcopal flag, and after a hard-played patch, the campers won 7 to 5.


5.  Table fellowship:  During lunch and dinner our campers were free to share meals with anyone on camp, and over the course if the week, all sorts of combinations of campers shared a meal and conversation with one another.

6.  Kayaking on the lake:  Early morning paddlers enjoyed calm waters and eagle sightings.  Ttwo groups of senior high campers paddled all the way to Wild Horse Island!P1010754

7.  Campers who serve:  Our Senior High campers gave generously to one another and to the camp through their service.  Some campers spend an afternoon pulling noxious weeks from the camp property, others spend an evening assisting the kitchen staff in preparing, serving, and cleaning up from dinner.  Our senior cabin took time to write a letter of encouragement to every camper on camp.

8.  Heartfelt prayers:  Campers asked chaplains, their counselors, and their fellow campers to join them in prayer throughout the week.  The hillsides of camp became places of prayer, places in which campers stopped and turned to God.  We give thanks for the prayers campers and staff offered at camp, and trust that campers continue to turn to God even after they return home.

9. Campership” support:  We’re grateful for the generosity of parishes who helped send many of their Senior High students to Camp Marshall.  Ten more Senior High campers (including two former Grace Campers) requested financial support directly from Camp Marshall.  We are grateful that these ten amazing teenagers could participate in the week of camp, and we are still seeking funds to pay for their camp experience.  Make a donation today to support one or more of those campers.IMG_4538

10. Friendships that sustain our campers even after camp concludes.  Relationships born at camp grow in wonderful ways even after camp concludes.  We give thanks for the unexpected friendships that took root during this year’s Senior High session, and for the ways our campers continue to encourage one another even after camp has ended.

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