Summer Camp at Procter is holy space set apart on sacred ground. Our camp is a place where children, youth and families are invited to and supported in exploring their faith, asking hard questions and building new relationships. This happens through spending time outside, meeting new friends and having goofy fun together.
This summer over 400 campers joined our counselors, chaplains, nurses and staff for a session of camp. Chaplains and counselors led our Christian formation program, with “Grant us Strength and Courage,” serving as the theme. Campers examined the story of the Good Samaritan, Ruth and Naomi’s family bond, the faith of the woman suffering from hemorrhages, the wavering faith of Peter as he stepped out of the boat and Mary’s bravery and surprise visiting the empty tomb. These stories, among others, served as inspiration for how to walk in faith in the world, name and discuss our fears and draw strength from prophets and saints.
Summer 2018 brought lots of new programs, activities and adventure to Procter! Youth Campers camped out one night each week, cooking their own food over the fire, pitching tents and having group devotions under the stars. Sagrada Familia, a Spanish/English family camp, was offered for the second year and grew from 12 to 60 campers. The Leaders-in-Training program was a beautiful success: high school students applied to attend a training session and then shadow a counselor during Session 5. The session culminated in the LIT’s leading of a morning formation session and arguably the most fun evening activity of the summer, Procter Prom!
Campers of all ages delighted in swimming in the Procter Lake. Our new boats, an inflatable floating bouncer and waterslide and improved life jackets made it possible for campers to spend lots of time in the water this summer.
For the first time Procter offered Camp RISE, a session specifically focusing on grief care for campers from ages eight to 18. Responding to our call to follow Jesus into our neighborhood, we tailored this session specifically for youth whose family members have died from drug use. Therapists and chaplains joined the counselors this week to create community, process loss, fear, love and anger together. Like every Procter camp, these campers felt the unconditional love and support created here weekly. We plan to offer this session again in 2019.
Many thanks to the Procter staff who serve the diocese through their ministry of hospitality and service, and to all the parents, campers, clergy and community members who support this program. See you next summer!
Andrea Foote serves as Director of Camp and Youth Ministry at the Procter Center. Connect with Andrea at firstname.lastname@example.org.