Finding Space and Time through Confirmation Retreats

Jacob Sorenson Camp Ministries, Faith Formation

Too often, people think of confirmation as a class. Those in the Reformed traditions seem to have a particular knack of reducing confirmation ministry to a transfer of knowledge. When lessons come after busy school days, it reinforces this notion. If confirmation is a class, it is something we have to complete rather than a lifelong process. It is knowing the right information rather than getting to know the Savior of the world. We don’t … Read More

Mission Camp @ VBS

Kathryn McGregorCamp Ministries

Each summer, our church hosts a large, well-established Vacation Bible School (VBS). The VBS leaders began to notice, however, that participation by fourth- and fifth-graders was decreasing. These children said they felt that they had outgrown VBS. So, five years ago, we experimented with altering the VBS schedule for these older children and offering a longer period of time each day for children to participate in some type of service project. This change was so … Read More

Finding God at Camp

Julie HesterFaith Formation

What is it about getting away from our normal routines and into a camp setting that makes it easier to hear the voice of God? The Advocate will explore that question and others like it over the next few weeks as we share stories of faith formation in camp settings. We’ll hear about a mission camp, a camp focused on faith and sexuality, confirmation camp, a family camp, some reflections about how congregations can connect … Read More

Looking Ahead to Summer Ministry: Spiritual Practices for Camp Worship, Mission Trips, and Summer Worship

Sandy SaffordSpiritual Practices

Planning for a group worship time this summer? Try one of these practices, from Sandy Safford. Washed Clean This activity focuses on the practice of forgiveness–on receiving a fresh start, a clean slate, a new beginning through the grace of God. Supplies Oriental rice paper (sold by the roll at stores that carry art supplies), cut into 3-4 inch squares Washable markers (brown & black are preferable) Large clear glass/plastic bowl, filled with water Reflective … Read More

Takin’ It on the Road

Theresa McDonald-LeeFaith Nurture

Summer camps have long been a part of the traditional matrix of Christian education for the children in Presbyterian churches.  Children would attend Sunday school through the year and head off to a week of camp in the summer, often paid for or as a gift from the church.  Camp was seen as an extension of the work of the local congregation, a partner in providing quality summer ministry to reinforce what children learned throughout … Read More