This camp is like a family reunion to me now

- Updated May 16, 2019

I only went to The Leadership Camp once as a camper, but it truly changed my outlook on my faith. Church camp holds a very sacred place in my heart after experiencing a session with The Leadership Camp. Riley and Michael made the lessons very captivating, and I met a ton of new friends. The sessions feel like a family reunion to me now, and that is something I will cherish forever!

A Time to Recharge

No matter what type of personality you have you can always make a lot of friends. It is a very welcoming environment, and I feel very safe around all of the campers and staff. My feelings of security made it very easy to get comfortable and transform my mind through God’s word. John David and Julia Utterback are two of my best friends. They really helped me to realize what kind of Christian I needed to be while I was at camp my first year. We ended up standing by each other at the string ceremony during the last moments of camp. The next year, they asked me to be in their wedding! It was a huge honor that I never would’ve gotten to experience without coming to camp. They were just two of the countless people that were willing to help me work through any spiritual problems I had. I relied on those around me to help me build my strength to go back into everyday life with a Godly outlook.

A Time to Relieve

Being around a large number of Christians always helps me stay strong in my faith. I mean, that is technically a reason we go to church, but it’s different at camp! When we all come together it is a period of relief for me because of the strength I get from seeing other people grow in Christ while I’m on my journey. It shows me the beauty of my choice to follow Jesus, and brings me joy in so many ways. I am very glad Andrew and Janae Fridelle dragged me to The Leadership Retreat my senior year of high school. They are very helpful, and they will do anything to help any child of God. Even though we all have a bad, awkward, or just weird camp memories, we rely on each other to be a support system. There has never been a time where I felt alone, and that lifts a weight off of my shoulders. We support one another, and lift one another up so that no one has a bad week.

A Time to Engage

 My favorite part of the any camp day is when we all get together and sing in the dark. It gives me a chance to sing as loud as I want and not worry about who hears. I love worshiping God, but it feels enhanced in those moments. There are endless chances to pour your heart out to God. I’m very privileged to do that with the campers and staff at The Leadership Camp. I also love the discussion classes we have with our focus groups. It brings people from every age together, so there are many outlooks on the questions the group leader asks. Last year at camp, I got to be in Barry Chenault and Hayley Hudson’s group. They were hilarious, but most importantly, they were very supportive of what anyone had to say. The focus groups gave the younger kids a chance to leave a mark on the older kids. I loved having Symphony Hysten in my group. She always had something good to say! We became quite close because of these groups, and I am grateful for that!

 From camper to CIT to whatever title I may have in the future, I will always learn something new from camp. I’ve learned how to make dinner rolls with Cindy Forrest, how to make friendship bracelets with Ema Lee, and even how to come up with a last minute act in the talent show with Brenley Chadwick. I had so much fun. I always have an amazing time when I’m with the amazing group of people from The Leadership Camp. Dare I say it, I even had a good time washing the dishes! God is so good, and I couldn’t have been blessed with a better group of people to call my friends. There is no other group I would want to get dehydrated with in the middle of July!”

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