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Summer Camp Formation: Why It WORKS

Greetings in the name of the Lord! I write to you, having just completed another inspiring, exciting, boisterous, reverent, and one-of-a-kind day at Christian summer camp. I am serving as a chaplain for a session of 89 middle-schoolers here at Shrine Mont Camps, in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia. We just came from an evening Communion service in the outdoor chapel, surrounded by candlelight, with guitars and voices rising to the darkened sky. And the kids are LEARNING. The messages are sticking. The group is coming together. The answers (and questions) are getting more deep and honest. When I ask, "What did we talk about on the second day?" a dozen hands go up, and the correct response "Jesus is reliable," comes without delay.

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Summer Nurture – Talking and Listening with Children

Children are on a mission: God is working in, through and with them. what might be our role as parents - or caregivers in any capacity? How do we celebrate their noticings, attend when they are joyous or sorrowful, and offer creative paths from boredom into engagement? Listening comes first: fully listening to the child - not distracted by our busy schedules and mobile devices. It helps for us to be thinking in terms of of leading questions that engage, instead of just seeking the right answer. For example, "What do you think about that?"

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The Good Book Club: An Intergenerational Sunday School Offering

The Good Book Club is summer Christian Formation for all ages at Grace & Holy Trinity Church. We’re an urban church in Richmond, VA, where many of our parishioners are gone on summer weekends. With reduced numbers, and wanting to encourage inter-age Bible study, we don’t offer traditional age-graded Sunday School. Instead we do the inter-generational Good Book Club. It meets at 9:00 a.m. between our two services, and lasts for 45 minutes. With continental breakfast, including Starbucks coffee (very important!), and we gather around the table to talk, study, eat and be together.

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