Camp for a Week, Friends for Life!

The Church Marketplace

On my journeys in Africa in during my stint in the Peace Corps, I would often find myself in a local village store in need of supplies.  Lined on the make shift shelves would usually contain plastic bags of sugar, rice, loose leaf tea, sometimes dried beans, candles, and a couple notebooks and pencils for school children.  The entire contents of the…

Nature Deficit Disorder

In 2005, Richard Louv wrote Last Child in the Woods, a book that looks at the effects of human beings, especially children, lack of time in nature and connecting to the living world.  In this work, Louv coins the term Nature Deficit Disorder which examines some of the challenges children and youth face as they develop and mature into adults.  Children’s exposure…

Painting by Numbers

When I was a kid, I used to love doing arts and crafts. I would build models of the human body, put together science experiments, or do various crafts whenever I found the time. Oftentimes for birthdays or Christmas, I would receive art sets or project kits. One project that I remember vividly was a paint by number kit of a horse.…

Prevent the Melting of Christmas

A few days ago we experienced a surprise “snow storm” in New Braunfels. Snow covered trees and buildings transformed Slumber Falls into a winter wonderland. For those that have only experienced the camp the summer months, this was a welcomed change. It feels like Christmas is here. The feeling of Christmas is more than the snow.  There seems to be an excitement…

Monastic Living at Slumber Falls Camp

The United Church of Christ has some of the most remarkable camps and outdoor ministries.  Last week I was fortunate enough to spend a week with other folks involved with outdoor ministries at Silver Lake Camp in Connecticut for Consult XXI.  Consult occurs every two years and focuses on networking, education, and spiritual renewal for individuals connected to outdoor ministries.  This conference…

The Future of Slumber Falls

When I was a kid, I remember a story my dad told during a children’s moment in church.  It was a story about a King’s decree that every porch should be swept in the kingdom to help beautify the realm.  Any subject that did not have their porch swept by the following Tuesday evening would…

Thresholds

What was I thinking?  How did I get myself into this? These questions pop into my mind fairly often.  Whether I find myself wedged/stuck in a tiny tunnel three hours into a cave crawl, hanging off the side of a small truck overloaded with people and animals heading through the Sahara desert hours from the regional capitol, or wearing a purple Barney…