Blog

Our Vision

 

“At Faith Bible Camp we desire to connect and grow relationships with people for the purpose of helping them create and grow a relationship with God.”

Faith Bible Camp has been running a two week camp every summer for over 70 years. Over the years we’ve had the opportunity to redefine who we are and what we want to accomplish through camp. When we thought about it, we came up with three things we would like to see happen;

  1. We want to see kids meet Jesus.
  2. We want to build relationships with kids to help them meet Jesus.
  3. We want to disciple youth so that they can know Jesus in a deeply affecting way.

Here’s a little bit about each of these goals;

We want to see kids meet Jesus

At our core, we’re a Christian summer camp. We care about Jesus, and we care about kids, so it’s a no-brainer to want them to meet up. We believe that Jesus is going to change kids lives in a positive way, far more than we ever could on our own. In fact, we believe that Jesus is going to change kid’s hearts and minds to be loving, faithful, and hopeful.

We want to build relationships with kids to help them meet Jesus.

As Christians, we believe that Christ dwells within us; that means that whenever we love somebody like Jesus would, that person has a tangible encounter with the person of Christ. Because of this it’s very important to us that we love youth by teaching them, taking care of them, and having fun with them. This is not a camp where campers will be left to fend for themselves; our hope is that through building connections with Campers by feeding them, relating to them, and caring for them, we would help them encounter Jesus in an impactful way.

We want to disciple youth so they can know Jesus in a deeply affecting way

Camp doesn’t stop when kids turn 14. They’re welcome to join us as Jr. Staff, where they will be taught all about how Camp runs and given the skills they need to serve effectively at camp and beyond. In addition to camp skills, we want to empower youth to pursue Jesus after camp too; we accomplish this by training them in the overarching story of the bible, as well as by teaching them spiritual disciplines (Like prayer, fasting, silence and solitude, etc.) that will equip them to pursue a relationship with Jesus after camp is over. We love youth, and our hope is to see them develop into mature and godly believers with a faith that perseveres, not because we made them that way, but because Jesus did.

 

When God speaks at Camp

I remember finding the entire church experience to be quite boring as a kid. I didn’t connect with other kids, and the adults were all too happy- happier than I knew they were outside of church. It all became part of a monotonous dance we all partook in every week- at least, from my perspective. I was young, but I knew that church had become vapid. I clocked out, and I didn’t care. This was not only my experience, but has been the experience of dozens of people in my millenial age bracket. What made matters worse was the fact that people would actually comment on my lack of engagement to my face: they would ask why I wasn’t a church very much anymore, or why I didn’t go to youth group. It was all very off-putting, so I was content to feel myself slipping out of their tightening grasp through the power of apathy.

Of course, this is not the churches fault. Let me be clear that this is not another tiresome article expressing how the church needs to change so that it can attract youth. The Church has done nothing wrong; it has faithfully lived and proclaimed the gospel since I was a child. Plenty of other people have profound experiences with God at church. The issue was with me, and more broadly, my human condition. I was unconvinced I needed the gospel, and unconvinced that the church had anything to offer me: There was no way that the rhythmic life I had been raised in could open my closed ears to hear God speaking, which of course He was.

The Gospel had fallen on deaf ears.

But then, Something happened.

Camp happened.

Like a child ripped from the muted comfort of a womb, I was thrust into the presence of God. Nature was blaring. People were foreign. The cabins rugged. I was uncomfortable… but my curiosity was piqued. As I began to lean into the words that were said during chapel, I found myself strangely disarmed. I was caught up in the mystery of God.

And of course, I became a Christian.

As I’ve spent my summers at camp ever since, I think I may have caught on to it’s secret: Camp helps kids own their faith by giving them a place that is all theirs. Camp is an experience away from the familiarity of family and the comfort of routine where youth are forced to forge new paths of friendship and faith. It’s in the context of this untamed community of believers and seekers that youth gain the capacity to listen for and hear God.

So if you’re like me, you’ll find this revelation completely underwhelming; Camp helps kids hear God in a new and relevant way because it is outside their normal life. Yet there’s something refreshing about this: It is not our responsibility to make children hear God. It is not even within our own power to make children hear God. It is by releasing our children to the spiritual wilderness of camp that they’re free to listen to God on their own terms.

And then of course,

God speaks.

Summer 2017 Review

This summer was full of great stories and adventures. In ministry, it’s easy to get caught up with numbers and programs, but the fact of the matter is that stories are what we take with us after summer camp. Sometimes those stories are happy- they’re stories of kids being taught to ride bikes, or making lifelong friends, or even meeting Jesus for the first time. Sometimes those stories are sad, like having to leave camp early because of an injury, broken friendships, or even broken hearts.

The common thread through all of these stories however, is that they’re all our stories, and they will carry on with us for the rest of our lives. It’s this experiential punch that makes camp so dear to us; camp means something to each us individually, uniquely.

The uniqueness of camp is also what makes it such a powerful means of conveying the Gospel. Camp, in all of it’s glorious, local, specific nature, is where children (and staff) can meet Jesus in a personal way.

We’re excited to take what we learned this summer and apply it next summer in ways that really impact the way we do camp. We’re even more excited to see you next summer!

Blessings,

Jesse Kane, Social media and promotions coordinator