I hope you all are doing well. As I write this, the heavens just opened up outside, but otherwise, it’s been pretty nice lately. I hope you all have been enjoying your summer so far.
Part of me can’t believe it’s already mid-July, but, then I look back at the last blog I wrote and realize, it’s been a wonderfully full time of year. This blog will feature my experience at Campfirmation and what is on the horizon for the rest of the summer.
If you were able to be present online or in person on Sunday, you heard a little bit about Confirmation Camp, also known as “Campfirmation.” I had a blast with the kids and leaders there and learned what the camp looks like for the first time. You may be wondering, what does the week of Campfirmation look like?
First, we stayed in the dorms of Augustana, so that’s an experience for the youth in itself! We ate in the cafeteria–which has excellent chocolate milk, and I was very close to asking for their recipe for their chocolate rice crispy treats. There are times of learning in a large group setting about topics like: “Who is God?” “Sin/Forgiveness,” “Life Together,” “Living in Hope,” and “Love as we are Loved.” We did this through skits, games, watching clips of videos, and breaking things down in our small groups called ‘care groups.’ The other churches that were represented at this week’s campfirmation were: St. John’s Lutheran in Joliet, Grace Lutheran in Libertyville, Shepherd of the Lakes Lutheran in Grayslake, and Trinity Evangelical Lutheran in Harvard. We look forward to inviting more churches to join next year!
For the rest of this month, I am turning my sights toward working with the Council, committees, and staff to build our ministries and schedules for the fall. The month of August will bring a really exciting variety of events and programming, including a Family Fun Fest on August 5th! There is more information about this event in the rest of the newsletter. Personally, I am really excited to gather our church and community together for service, fun, and fellowship. I hear there may be something called a cupcake walk! I also love that the backpacks we are filling will go to our COOL Ministries Food Pantry partners for them to distribute where there is a need. Spread the word to your friends, neighbors and invite them to join the Family Fun Fest!
The next big event is our week of Faith in Action Camp for our K-High school youth, August 7-11th. When I heard about all that is being planned, I wanted to be at every day of camp and share it with all of you. One event I’m really looking forward to that week is a luncheon on Wednesday with members from St. James, Grace United Methodist, and our youth. There we will share stories of faith across generations. I pray it is a wonderful time of faith formation and growing together in Christ.
There are also two concerts in the works in August and September. The August concert set for August 19th will feature the music of our unique and talented Damascus Road group. The concert in September on September 9th will showcase our growing and vibrant St. James Brass Ensemble.
Whether it is through face painting or a human pyramid, trombone playing, or singing to a guitar, when we come together as a community of faith, we are sharing God’s love. I thank God for all of you and the extraordinary dedication and talents you bring to this church in so many ways. You are a light in a world in need of hope, healing, and connection.
Thank you, and God bless the rest of your July,