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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


At the time of this writing it is 10:00 p.m. on a Tuesday night and I am pumped! A conference call with our camping commission has just ended and there is a lot to be excited about.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the camping and reunion program is very important to our community. Hundreds of people will attend our camps this summer, each with hopes of experiencing combinations of activities that will produce relaxation, recreation, and spiritual renewal. In order to make all that happen, there is a lot of work that needs to be done. The work of preparation of the grounds and facilities is undertaken every year by the dedicated campground boards and dozens of volunteers who give freely of their time for the benefit of others. They work to meet provincial and other safety standards for grounds, building, safe drinking water and meal preparation facilities. They work to upgrade and maintain their facilities to make the camping experience not only enjoyable but wonderful. Their work is so important.

Then there is the camps themselves to be planned and provided for. Once again, there are provincial health and safety regulations to meet plus world church standards for risk management. We have four campground boards, each with their own guidelines that need to be understood and followed. Then there is the fact that our six reunions, five youth camps, and numerous retreats are all staffed by volunteers. Those volunteers need to be trained, not only so that we meet or exceed provincial and world church guidelines, but also so that we have safe and enjoyable camps. Their training is clearly very important.

When I was reassigned to Canada East Mission 2 ½ years ago, several people told me that the Director and Staff Retreat every fall was very helpful to them in understanding and planning for the following year, but the Camp Staff Training Day held in the spring needed to be strengthened. It was the weak link in the chain. Consequently, once our new camping commission got their feet under them, their attention was turned to this need. For the past several months, this group of five people has worked to develop a training session that will be not only meaningful but powerful. Tonight we met in teleconference to make final decisions. I truly believe they have nailed it.

This year, on June 17 – 19 at Ziontario, we will provide excellent and important training for all our staff,no matter what camp or grounds they work at. Sessions will be provided for directors, business managers, camp counselors, cooks, recreation leaders, lifeguards, and more. In addition, training will be offered in team building, group facilitation, and guidance in appropriate social media contact following the camp. Can you believe all that? It is amazing what this group has accomplished. PLUS, worship and worship training will be provided by our Apostle!

If you have any role in the camping program this summer, you need to be at Ziontario, June 17-19. Further, if you know someone else who is planning to be on staff, either now or in the future, they need to be there as well. I think you will be surprised and impressed.

Our camping program in CEM just got better. The weakest link in our camping chain has been reforged, and the entire season will be stronger. I am definitely pumped!

Those not yet registered, please contact Wendell Martin at immediately. Registration is free, but we need to know you are coming, and the sooner the better.

See you on the 17th.

Posted by Carman

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