CALLING ALL CAMP LOVERS!
Camping Ministry has been an amazing part of so many lives, and will continue to touch many more after us. We all have memories of campfires and dining halls and crazy counselors who changed our lives in so many ways. Unfortunately, the times are changing and what was once a vital and vibrant ministry is struggling to find its place and relevance all across the world. But I assure you, camps are still changing lives. In Yellowstone Conference, we are working to become vital camps once more for youth and people today - in whatever capacity that may look like. We will be making changes, building relationships and trying new ideas and experiments.
For our first experiment, we are creating what will be called the Camping Ministry Team. This will be a team of people who have a passion for camping ministry, gifts to grow our ministry and a faith to take the steps even when we can't see the rest of the staircase (Martin Luther King).
If that sounds like you, please read on!
What: Camping Ministry Team gathering.
We are in the process of developing a Camping Ministry Team, which will be made up of those with a passion for camping, people and their faith. We will be working towards growth and vitality within one of the most beloved areas of ministry.
How it works:
In this new system, current deans and co-deans are required to attend the training and be vital members of the team. It is also encouraged that Camp Managers and Board members are team members as well. This is to help us stay connected as a current body, and build relationship with all of those involved in making camping happen every year! You are welcome to be a part of the group even if you do not fall under any of those categories, with one requirement: You have to be filled with WILLING spirit. We are a group that will focus on getting our hands dirty (both literally and figuratively - ya know, because camps have dirt), pushing each other and our ministry to the next level! By attending this meeting, you will be committing to the growth and development of our camping programs and facilities, with your time, efforts, prayers and gifts. Not something to take lightly :)
Although it will not require your active attention 24 hours a day, it will require you to be an active part of the growth process-meaning: praying, brainstorming, and yes, sometimes doing work!
When and where: February 27, 28 and March 1, 2015 at Bozeman UMC.
(The current plan is to sleep at the church; we are in the process of inquiring if any local Bozemanians would be willing to host a person or two for Friday and Saturday nights - more to follow.)
People who are welcome:
Camp Board Members or people who are instrumental in camp facilities or events
Camp Deans (past and present)
People who have a SERIOUS interest in furthering camping ministry, with the intention of actually doing work and making progress!
Age does not matter, as long as you are eager and willing!
Here's what we are doing... (tentatively):
Agenda (subject to change):
- Dean Training and Conversation: 3:00/4:00 pm - 7:00 pm (current deans: required attendance, past deans: encouraged to come)
- Worship For All: 7:00 pm (this is to allow driving time for those coming from far away- optional but encouraged)
All Topics Listed Below - Time schedule to be determined
- Develop a mission and vision for what we, as a ministry of people who are on the ground doing the work, want our ministry to accomplish
- Eating (of course)
- Fundraising Ideas (campaign/church partnership, etc)
- Looking at setting up an endowment fund
- Scholarship programs/fund development
- Ads/Promotional videos for camp facilities and camping ministry as a whole
- Promoting local church involvement
- Figuring out how to be more intentional about spirituality, connections to God, faith development of youth, and those in camp settings
- Developing a devotional program for 2015 staff
- Developing standards and requirements for faith development in curriculum
- Develop an effective staff AND deans annual training guide
- Job descriptions for deans and staff
- Set standards for camp staff by using evaluations/observation periods, etc.
If anyone has any other ideas on items to work on, or ways we can structure the gathering to make our time most effective, please email Abbie Thompson with those ideas.
The mission of the 2015 United Methodist Camping and Retreat Ministries is to Go Onward.
We are being called to move Forward, Further, and Beyond. And with God out in front of us, there is nothing we can't do!