Camp Summary 2012

Posted on 21. Aug, 2012 by admin in Camp Summaries

This summer we saw 312 campers come through Camp Salvation! I believe this is the biggest year yet, with about 100 more kids than last year! I counted 106 Staff members. About 45 were brand new staff members and I am so thankful for our new staffers. Some of the staff served more than one week, and a handful stayed to help with all the weeks.  The Sr. High was the fullest I remember ever seeing it, and it was a good thing we expanded the Intermediate or we would have had to turn away at least 40 kids. I just want to thank God for the opportunity to see so many kids be challenged in their walk with God. I especially want to thank God for the 30-35 campers who claimed to have accepted Christ Jesus into their lives for the first time! I pray that the body of Christ continues to carry the torch with these kids and help them walk in victory in the off season. There were a lot of re-dedications and commitments to live for Jesus. Time will tell if they were able to bring that home and make an impact on their churches, schools and homes. I pray that God will use them as well as the “staff family” to bring revival. All I know is that God’s not dead, He’s surely alive! He’s living on the inside, roaring like a lion! If anyone can do it, it’s God!

Special thanks to Linda Barron for the beautiful land we are able to use because of her and her family, as well as her faithful support of Camp Salvation.  Thanks to Westside Bible Church, who came in and owned the Family Work week in June. They were able to get a lot of projects done and we want to thank them for their hard work. It was worth it! Gill Romirez was a big help again with our water. He helped us get it tested again and then went above and beyond by helping us improve our water treatment system as well. He is a great neighbor. Thanks also to our inspectors we had this year for making us better and for giving us the thumbs up. Also I want to thank everyone who volunteered as staff members this year to make camp a huge success! May God richly bless each one of you! Most of all, thanks be to God for His unsearchable riches in Christ Jesus our Lord! His grace is truly overwhelming!

Respectfully submitted by,

Tim Muth, Camp Director

Sr. HIGH WEEK

This was the biggest Sr. High week I can remember us having as a camp! There were 66 campers and over 40 staff and staff kids. This means that the cooks were cooking for 120 and they were mostly all adults! The first few meals were behind schedule until they realized that there would be no time to break after one meal before prepping for the next. God bless the cooks! It was a hard week for them, and they were amazing!

Our speakers were Mark Fisher for the evening session, and Richard Stepanick for the morning session. They both did a great job and I felt like the kids responded well to them.

Two of the most memorable events this week were the hike and the evening service on Friday. The hike was memorable because several things went wrong on it that God seemed to use as divine appointments. They were able to get about 13 to the summit, but they went so fast that they got spread out and a few of the hikers got into binds as they tried to catch back up with the nearest of the many groups. Two girls slid down some snowpack to cut through to a switchback trail and slid over some rocks, shredding one girl’s jeans, scratching her legs and arm up and bruising her tail bone. The other bruised her shoulder and got a pretty mean gash in her knee. She was bleeding and according to her testimony on Friday night it was a huge faith builder for her because no sooner than she prayed for God to help her, a family of hikers came to their rescue. One of them tore his shirt off his back and tied a tunicate on her leg to slow the bleeding and he and his father (and by then one of the hike leaders too) carried her to the trail where other camp staff met them and drove down to meet up with the ambulance that took them to the hospital. She was a bit woozy when they got there, so praise God for everyone’s quick assistance! Another girl had an ankle sprain and was being helped down the mountain to a vehicle that had been sent to get her after being called for help. That was why there was a vehicle there so quickly for the ones we sent to the hospital. Meanwhile on another trail, one of the campers who was going between groups left the trail and then got disoriented and ended up hiking down to a cabin where a local man (former Marine) drove him back to “camp” (the camp sites at Blue Lake) where he met up with one of our staff who had just sent his son down one of the trails to meet up with another staff member who was coming up the original trail trying to find him somewhere in the middle as he just seemed to disappear from the trail. I received a text from my brother who had met up with the other rescue hero with no sign of the lost camper.  They were going to go back and down any side trails they saw to look for him, when the other staff member called with the good news that he had the lost camper! We were overcome with emotion and thankfulness! The local search and rescue team was called back and told they were no longer needed (We were waiting for them to call back when we got the news). Kids back at the camp had been praying, and there was a collective sigh of relief and excitement when we announced he had been found and was on his way. It seemed like every staff member was involved in the rescue efforts whether it was driving, re-hiking the trails, waiting at the bottom or coordinating with the remaining radios, and cell phones (texting mostly) so that we would have a clear picture of what was happening and respond to it. God seemed to know how many staff we needed and that day it seemed like we had just enough. Praise God!

The next day we had the privilege of having the Langwell family, who helped the girls down and were staying at a campsite down the road from us, come up for lunch and a tour of the camp before they headed home. The campers and staff prayed over them and thanked them for their help. The girl who gashed her knee was able to give a camp shirt, as a thank you for all of us, to the man who cut up his shirt for her. They were very sweet and had a few bits of advice for our hiking program. Then on Saturday morning, Don Scott, the kind local man who found the lost camper was able to come to the camp for breakfast along with his son on their way down the mountain and had an encouraging word for the campers and also some advice for our hiking program. He even prayed a blessing on the camp before he was done. Both visits were a real blessing and in spite of how they learned about our camp, everyone seemed to be genuinely impressed with what they saw God doing here. We sat down with our hike leaders and worked out a written policy for leading hikes that I hope will keep this from happening again. I will say that God used it though, and that is something I love that about our God.

Friday night was so sweet (even without the camp fire, due to the state-wide fire ban). We opened up the microphone for testimonies and kids jumped at the chance to share what God was doing and pray over each other. This went on for over two hours! It was such a sweet thing to see young people walking in their faith together and encouraging one another. There were less than a dozen, who didn’t jump in to the testimony time, but the rest did and that was awesome to see God work in their lives. I believe that every step toward God is beautiful, even if it might look a bit “clumsy” to some. Our special speaker closed and then I also wrapped up at the end to clarify who deserves the praise for them being touched at camp. Too often we give credit to the messengers or location instead of the source. God is the real source of the blessing; He was just using his hands and feet to minister to people.  I handed out more than a dozen Bibles to kids who were just starting out in their faith the last morning, and most of them were claiming a salvation testimony at camp. It would not be exaggerating to say at least 10 kids claimed they accepted Christ at camp this week. One of them was the lost camper who had accepted Christ the day before the hike after a long struggle with God and several counselors talking to him and praying for him about his need.

Kerry Taube, a health inspector from Trinidad, came up for our yearly inspection. He walked around and gave us the thumbs up.

This is one of the fullest and most mature groups of staff I have had the privilege of working with up at camp. They are all heroes in my book. Thank you one and all for your service to God at our camp!

Praise God for his goodness and grace!

INTERMEDIATE WEEK #1

What a week! We had 62 campers and 24 staff members to make a total of 86 people up at camp and that makes for a pretty full week of camp. Our speakers were Jonathan Almanzar for the evening speaker and Daniel Fiester for the morning speaker. I am so thankful for the staff God provided for this week. They were exactly what we needed and I am so thankful for each one of them. On Friday, we had a staff member, Lee Davis, came up for a visit and brought a few guys with him to visit and they all pitched in where they could. They were all excellent help for the last day and I hope to have them back as staff in the future.

In the Tuesday night service, they were challenged to trust God with the “impossible thing” in their life and so we opened it up for discussion and the kids really opened up and received prayer and support for the things that only the God of the impossible could do. It was so sweet, and some of the kids definitely had break throughs.  There was a pretty good response that night from the campers as well as staff.

It rained several days but didn’t really stop any of the activities we normally try to get in each week. We did the boat day on Tuesday, and the hike was on Thursday. We took half of the camp on the hike to the saddle back where they ate lunch and then 19 went on to reach the summit, which seems to be the largest group to summit in quite a few years. The other half of the group took it slow and did the 3 mile ridge hike that ends at the lake where we ate lunch before heading back up to the camp. We did not have any incidents on either hike this week, not even a twisted ankle! So, thanks to all who helped us get better organized and better prepared for this week. I expect this to be the norm from now on.  We are going to need to look into getting some more radios for next year as the ones we got from the Pickle Factory are wearing down and dwindling in numbers.

The new fire chief, Lloyd Halliamen, came to look over our fire area and gave us permission to have a fire for the last night as long as there was no wind. We were still supposed to call it in before we did it, but we opened up the mic  for testimonies after the message and after it went for about a half hour of normal testimonies, someone shared something very personal that revealed his faith and heart. After that the testimonies became a lot more personal and deep. It was so sweet to see the body at work again. Kids were reaching out to kids, and leaders were speaking Scripture and truth into their lives. I love seeing God at work!  There were a few salvations, and I feel like there were some real big “break throughs” for most of the kids, especially for some kids from Crowley County.  I believe that God is going to do something great in the valley through these kids!

Thank you to all who helped and all who prayed, God really showed up (as He always does) and did some pretty cool stuff!

Jr. WEEK #1

We had 68 campers and 36 staff to make up 104people total in our first Jr. Week of the season. We had a lot of fun this week! This group was contagiously energetic! Probably the highlight of the week for me (besides the salvations I heard about) was the song times. After a couple of services something “clicked” and they really got into the worship with lots of enthusiasm. The kids sang at the top of their lungs and totally got into the songs. I was very impressed and often moved by their energetic, whole-hearted worship.

There was not much rain this week and we were not allowed to have a camp fire again, so we did a testimony time after the Friday night service. It seemed to go well and though we were aware of a couple of salvations that took place this week, during the testimony time a few more claimed they had accepted Jesus as their savior as well. Hard to say how many were for the first time, but I do believe that every move to God is a good one! I love seeing kids move forward in their walk with God. Our speaker this week was Brad Doherty, a pastor from Branson, CO. He was great and did a fantastic job relating to the kids. Brad asked them to come up with a better nickname than he was give back in school and they came up with “Thunder Duck”, which made for a lot of laughs. (I think it was originally a misunderstanding of when he mentioned a “thunder-dunk” in the NBA.) He embraced the name and had fun with it the rest of the week. He spoke using Peter’s story each night and kept the kid’s attention by keeping them very involved.  We used camp staff for the two morning sessions instead of bringing in a speaker for just those two sessions. This week did not seem to have the heavy feel of the first two weeks and I do not think it was just because they were younger. We were trying to figure it out one night and concluded that there were just a lot more good homes represented this week in the kids that were there and we believe that the growth we saw was not done in huge leaps, but more of a steady growth that is encouraged in their homes as well. During the testimony time there were some sweet testimonies given and I was encouraged that the kids were really growing in their faith and were willing to do whatever God would ask.

We got to go boating on Wednesday, and we took a hike on Thursday. Due to only having access to one church van, we opted to do the three-mile ridge hike for this week and ate lunch down at the lake. The kids had a great time hiking the ridge, looking for crawdads, and skipping rocks at the lake. There were no injuries on the hike, and the scheduling seemed to work good for the week.  We even got back with enough time to have a Bible bunk time and camper’s hour after some free time.

All in all it was a good week of camp. The staff was great and things ran pretty smooth. I was worried going into the week that we may not have enough people, but it worked out just fine and everything that needed to get done got done and several even went above and beyond to get some other projects done too. God is so good and we saw some sweet things this week in the lives of kids as they moved forward in their walk with God. Thanks for all the prayers and support to make this week possible!

Int. WEEK #2

We had 49 campers and 39 staff to give us a total of 88 people at camp this week. It is good that we split the week or we would have had 111 kids to deal with (not counting staff)and that would have been way too many for this facility. Praise God we did not have to turn anyone away! The staff was amazing this week and things ran very smooth. Everyone did their share and stuff got done so fast! They just made it look easy.

Our speakers this week were Jody Waldrop, a youth pastor from Firestone, CO who was our evening speaker, and Ken Valles of Karate Plus in Woodland Park, CO. Ken used the art of Karate to demonstrate Christian principles and got dressed up as a mountain man one day and a pony express rider the next day to drive home points from history of people who have walked with God. Several of the kids really got into the Karate lessons he offered after the morning sessions during free time and even got to do some board breaks the last day. He did a great job relating things to the Word of God and Biblical principles. Jody was coming back from being a counselor last year at camp and brough several staff members with him this time. He Spoke on Daniel and how he was able to stand strong in the midst of a twisted, sinful culture and how that relates to us. I love the heart he has for youth and for God and is a gifted leader with young people. This was evident by all the staff he brought with him as they owned the music this week as well as the vast majority of the counseling spots. There were even some on the helper staff too and the group just blended in nicely with the rest of the summer staff. It was sweet to see the friendships form and grow during the week. The whole group was just a huge blessing and we hope they can make it back again and again!

There was no camp fire again this week (wood piles are just getting bigger!). So after the evening service and snack we came back into the chapel for a real sweet testimony time.  It went for a while and kids really stepped up and shared some sweet commitments to walk with God. I felt like there were a lot of solid decisions for God and life commitments. Jody also threw out a 3-30 challenge. The 3-30 challenge is to be like Daniel and go to your knees three times a day for at least a month and be a true follower of God and not just a fan. Most if not all responded to this in some way and I believe that most of them really meant it. God is on the move and lots of campers took their next step toward God this week. Thank you all for your prayers and support!

For our hike we took them all to Trinchera and got 40 people up to the saddleback. There were, however, a couple of twisted ankles that needed help down the mountain, but then seemed to be back to normal later that night. On a maintenance note, we had some water issues. We took a couple of trips down the hill to check it out, and determined that the well is not keeping up with the pump. So we need to fill a little at a time or the chlorine pump will over dose the tank instead of keeping up with the incoming water.  It is useable, just in need of babysitting instead of running off for a few hours until it’s done. God bless all who helped to make this week a success!

Jr. WEEK #2

Before the weekend, it looked like this would be the smallest week of the summer, but due to a lot of last-minute applications, this week turned out to be the second largest (By one kid). We had 67 campers and 26 staff this week to make a total of 93 people at camp this week. It was a great week again and God did some sweet things in the lives of the campers. There were over a dozen that claimed to have accepted Christ for the first time this week and at least the same amount more that recommitted their lives to Jesus Christ. I got to talk to a couple kids this week and was convinced of the one’s salvation experience and the other committed to read his Bible and live like a real Christian at home. Both had really good questions and deep spiritual questions that were a thrill to answer for them. Their stories seemed like the general feel of the other decisions made this week as well. I love what God is doing.

We were not allowed to do the Friday night fire this week either, so that makes for the whole summer with no fires. Once again we had our s’mores warmed up in the oven and then went back to the chapel for a testimony time and favorite songs from the week. That service turned into a celebration time with kids really getting into the songs more than they had all week. And when they gave testimonies they were cheered like they just made the gave-winning shot! It was very encouraging and very sweet. No tears this time-only cheers!

The staff this week was amazing and the camp ran very smooth. Everyone pulled their weight and more. The Bandy kids and Mariah did the music with their band and even shared some of their very own songs that they wrote with us. I enjoyed having them and loved they way they jumped in and helped in so many ways other than just music. They even stuck around on Saturday to help close up camp with some of the usual ones. Our speaker this week was Russell Parker, a pastor from Eads who has been here for 4 years now. It was great to have him back and God really used him as well as staff who filled in for morning devotions and the two morning sessions.

This week we also had the inspector from Colo. Dep. Of Human Services, Martha Santistevan, come for a visit and her report is available through Kendra or myself if you would like to see the details.  We sent our compliance letter Monday after camp and most everything is done to comply except the doors on the chapel need to be turned inside out.  The issue is that exit doors need to swing out and they swing in right now. The rest of the issues we complied with were simple things that we dealt with or are dealing with now. Other than that it looks like we are doing ok.

I just want to thank everyone for their support and sacrifices to see camp continue. God sure showed up this year and kids responded and moved closer to God. I am especially excited that there were so many salvations this year, but I love when kids take one step closer to God no matter what that step is. God is great!

Respectfully submitted by,

Tim Muth, Camp Director

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