What did I see?
I saw a completely empty camp and heard the sounds of emptiness. Honestly, I got a little emotional because I really missed my co-workers and campers who filled the grounds just a few months ago. Standing on the porch of the lodge, I looked down at the sidewalk and thought back to all the times I'd see the campers walking in to the church for service. I looked at the pool and reflected on the fun the kids had going down the water slide. I looked at the baseball field and reminisced on Bishop Gregory playing Dizzy Bats with the campers. I smiled when I thought about His Grace not being phased by campers dumping a giant garbage can full of water on him.
Walking from the lodge to the ropes course, I passed the St Nektarios and Cross shrines. I stopped and took a moment to remember all the campers and staff standing around the shrines singing hymns. The wind blew, and it was as if I could hear the continual echoes of the kids singing. As I continued making my way to the ropes course, I walked the trail dedicated to Father Michael Rosco. Although I had only met him once, I remembered the joy he seemed to radiate. Upon arrival at the ropes course, I looked around and thought about all the people who are responsible for the Camp in its entirety. Everyone from the donor of the camp property, to the newborn baby who just had his or her first time at camp, along with everyone in between.
See, Camp is a special place because it both gives and takes from every single person who encounters the Camp. There's something majestic about camp. Obviously there's something holy about Camp. The trees and the fields of camp feel the breeze in a different way than the trees and fields outside of Camp. Why? My opinion: The breezes we feel at Camp Nazareth is the breath of God breathing His love and grace into everyone and everything.
After taking some photos of the high ropes elements, I walked back to the lodge to debrief with Father Stephen. While he and I were out earlier, Father pointed out an epic spider web. I'm going to be honest, I'm deathly afraid of spiders. But for some reason I had no fear of spiders because Father Stephen and I got close to the web and observed all its beauty. I didn't have my camera on me, so when I left the camp, I made sure to stop and photograph the web. You'll see a picture of the web posted below.
It's an amazing thing, camp is! How many places on earth can you go where their air feels significantly different? How many places can you go where the sky seems more clear and the grass seems more green? How many places can you go where you feel embraced in love? This is why I love Camp Nazareth. Generations of love, prayer and sacrifice is the foundation of Camp. We experience it and we feel it, year after year. What a joy! What a beauty! Experiencing Gods creation, within His creation!
Glory to Jesus Christ!