Unification News for September 1998

Youth & Family Camp in Pennsylvania

by Rob Sayre-New Tripoli, PA

Over 170 adults and children gathered in Eastern Pennsylvania Aug. 10-16 for lectures, prayer and fun. A Youth Camp for kids 9-15 features two lecture tracks, one for 4th-6th graders and one for 7th and up.

The Camp Shehaqua is a former Girl Scout Camp located in Hickory Run State Park in East Central Pennsylvania. It is maintained by the Dept. of Environmental Resource. The Camp itself has 40 individual cabins (w/o electricity) for sleeping and many other buildings that were used for staff quarters, lectures, crafts and dining. Itís surrounded by State Forest in a beautiful wooded setting approximately 2 hours drive east of New York City of I-80.

The Family Camp consisted of 14 families with kids younger than 9. Excepts of the kids reflections appear below.

The camp was very good. I liked it because it was in Godís creation. (True) Father said that now we should care about our surroundings. I didnít like the fact that there was no electricity or mirrors, but I lived. Probably I would have been late to lectures and things if there were those things. I was not excited at all about coming to this camp, basically because I came from far away and I didnít know anyone, but now I am very glad I came because it has been a good experience for me.

Making Friends-90 kids aged 9-15 attended Youth Camp, 11 younger kids of Youth Camp Staff joined the Family Camp, which consisted of 14 families and 34 kids.

Before, I didnít want to go because none of my friends were going, but I made new friends and saw people from last summer. I made many new friends right away, itís hard not to when everyone was so wonderful and open. I find it so much easier to relate to them, seeing as how we share a very important thread, True Parents.Also, during this workshop, I liked my group and having group discussions and stuff. Our group leader was really great. No offense to the adults, but I liked having a 2nd generation elder as a group leader because she gave us a lot of advice about school, the blessing, and stuff like that.

The Square Dance-the Virginia Reel and others!

I loved the square dance. I liked it this year that we could dance with our friends at the end. I could take up pages about it. I probably had the most fun square dancing. I felt Godís presence with us, like he was having as much fun as we were. I understood then about when my dad said that God needed us to experience joy through. At first I really, really didnít want to square dance but when I did, I really enjoyed it. I thought the dance was very fun despite the partner I got (he was very short and couldnít waltz with me).

Other Activities - Evening activities consisted of campfires & singing, a candlelight prayer, a pictionary tournament, and an evening of entertainment by the children. Afternoon activities included crafts, swimming, sports and a hike.

I especially liked the candlelight prayer and pictionary. Crafts were great and so were the sportsÖI loved the square dance, candlelight prayer and especially pictionary because we won! I bet the talent show will be good too! The evening programs like the candlelight prayer, campfire, pictionary, the dance I really liked, the camp & lectures. I liked everything.

Being with other BCís

Whether it be at camp or not, I am happy to be with other blessed children.

I really love being here in this atmosphere with other BCís. I rarely get the chance to do this, and when I do, it becomes all the more special. I met a lot of people and got to hang around with other BCís which isnít something I can do often.

Growth & Overcoming

I learned to overcome difficulties (such as the fear of spiders) very quickly. Instead of concentrating on external things, I was able to concentrate on my relationship with God because of the heavenly atmosphere. But I think the most important part was that I think and hope this camp made me a better person. I gained a lot of new knowledge through the lectures and also felt Godís presence during the campfire and our prayers with candles ÖEstablishing a relationship with God was, on the other hand, not as easy. I really didnít know where to begin or how to start. The prayer over candlelight was wonderful. This is when I felt closest to God. Being in his creation, just pouring out my heart to him through tears and average conversation. It was the most wonderful experience, and truthfully, I felt and I knew He was listening, this was, to me, the best part of camp. I made a lot of new friends and my relationship towards God improved (mostly from the candlelight prayer and lectures).

The Lectures-there was two lecture groups. Noah Ross lectured the 4th-6th graders and Scott Simonds the 7th and up. During the 70ís Noah taught in N. California and Scott in Southern.

The lectures were very good because he (Uncle Scott Simonds) explained so well and made me understand even more about the Divine Principle. I feel a little more close to God now. GOD RULES!!! The lectures and lecturer was interesting, as was said before, no matter how many time I hear DP, or certain areas, it always sounds wonderful, and something new hits me, I learn every time. He (Scott Simonds) was also very thorough and clear and allowed everything to be easily understood. My relationship to God improved because of Noahís lectures. The lectures were interesting. Scott was good at explaining things. The lectures were really good too. I learned a lot more about True Father, Abraham, Noah, and all the other people we learned about. God really did speak through him. THANK YOU NOAH!!! This camp helped me work on more of my intellectual aspect of my life of faith. I learned more than I thought I would from these lectures. I learned about my heart and position in the world. This was a very good workshop for me to learn leadership position over the little ones (younger children) when Iím usually the little one.

Growing Closer to God

Every time I come to a camp like this I feel that I become closer to God and I understand everything a little more clearly. I feel more like an older sister and I found myself really loving everyone as it they were my younger brother or sister. I especially liked the candlelight prayer. I really felt close to God, I actually cried!

The Food

The food was a lot better than most of the other camps I go to so that was definitely a plus. The food? . . . As last year, flawless! The food was good and the servers were friendly too! The food was "Da Boom!" PLEASE KEEP THE COOK! She made the BEST FOOD! I LOVED IT. All the food was GREAT.

Future Activities

The Pennsylvania Camps (Youth & Family) are organized and staffed by parents. 1998 was the fourth year and represented a milestone in our development. While the Camp began with parents in Pennsylvania, they have grown and serve families from a wide geographic area. To continue to grow and serve the needs of the 2nd Generation and their families will require helping others to start similar initiatives in their areas. We intend to offer information and instruction about how to go about this.

To this end we are establishing a web site, planning activities throughout the year as well as many new activities and initiatives for next summer. We also video taped Noahís lectures and plan to edit and offer these for sale with proceeds going to fund other youth activities. The participation and active involvement of parents, their energy, enthusiasm and commitment to a bright future for our children are our only limits.

For more information about:

The Youth Camp-Contact Rob or Sally Sayre 610-298-2919 kittatinney@sprintmail.com or Kyle or Cynthia Toffey 732-530-8284 toffey@injersey.com
For Family Camp-Contact Robert or Kyoko Pickell 717-629-6249 rpickell@ptd.net or Chris or Heddy Ching 732-957-8208 chrisc@mcstudios.com

Check out our web-site at www.bccamps.a9.org for information on Winter Workshops and other fun activities.

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