Spiritual Gifts

I was confirmed in an ELCA Lutheran church, I participated in Living Water Ministries camps for eleven years, and I’ve gone to the ELCA Youth Gathering in Detroit. One might say that my ‘Lutheran Résumé’ is through the roof. But, here’s the shocker– I started my faith life by being baptized into the Episcopal church. I had inherited Lutheranism from my paternal family but many people on my mother’s side were Episcopal priests. Because of this, my family has molded my faith life into a beautiful culmination of ELCA Lutheran and Episcopalian traditions. Living Water Ministries is an example of Continue Reading →

Fishers of People

MYTH: Day camp is less important than on-site camp at Stony Lake. Last year, I was hired as a Day Camp counselor and I’m not going to lie– I was pretty anxious about it. As a long time Michi-Lu-Ca camper, I was unfamiliar with how Day Camp worked, and my fear of missing out on happenings on-site, or at Stony Lake, was real. But let me tell you, the day camps I had the privilege of taking part of changed my life. Day Camp is in a different city each week, which required me to plunge into the culture and Continue Reading →

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

“She’s wonderful,” exclaimed Mary Anne to a fellow Abundant Life camper as I served them slices of cheese for their sandwiches. The response to the question, “What is Abundant Life week all about?” is almost always, “It’s one of the happiest weeks at camp”. Before I experienced Abundant Life week for myself last year, I had always wondered what made this program so special. Now I understand that what sets this week apart from the rest are the little joys the Abundant Life campers bring to us, like Mary Anne, who will forthrightly tell you when she thinks you are Continue Reading →

Slowly Changing the World

My grandmother suffered from dementia in her final years. At the time, the best place for her was the memory care wing of an assisted living center. She was a strong willed woman with a deeply rooted faith. I remember, despite her failing memory, my grandmother would hear a church hymn and would hum along almost instantaneously. She could also mouth the words to the Lord’s Prayer up until the very end. While my grandmother’s mind was clouded with so many uncertainties, Jesus’ grace and love was something she held on to tightly, with the help of loved ones and Continue Reading →

With God, All Things Are Possible

Imagine that you are 35 feet off the ground. You hear your friends cheering you on from below as you traverse the double tightrope on Stony Lake’s brand new high ropes course. The exhilaration you feel as you fly through each element is incredible. But I’ll let you in on a camp secret. The goal of high ropes is not for campers to complete the course. While it is a very physical task, we have high ropes here at Stony Lake to empower campers and strengthen their faith. We honor where each camper is at physically, mentally, and spiritually by Continue Reading →