SOUTH MOUNTAIN CHRISTIAN CAMP Fall 2005 Volume 6, Issue 1
The Mountain Star Inside this issue: Ten Most Wanted
Special CD offer
Find out how to order the first CD recorded by Amber Lee. (page 3)
Summer Camp Notes: • 638 campers came to camp this summer. • 99 asked Jesus into their hearts for the first time; 31 rededicated their lives to Him. • 91 were baptized here in our swimming pool. • Every camper received a copy of the song “Ocean Floor” on CD as a gift.
Captain O.A. Fish, Retired Eastern Airlines Camp Founder/President
Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain (Psalm 127:1). Those of you who read my book, Fingerprints of God, may remember one of the chapters titled “The Home the Lord Built.” Implanting the vision God had given us to build a camp began by first building our home. It was during this phase of building our home that I began to see God’s handiwork. This chapter tells the story of those early miracles. It was an exciting time for our family. If you haven’t read my book, I encourage you to do so. That was thirty-three years ago, and since then South Mountain Christian Camp has come a long way. Now we are beginning a new phase in the expanding ministry of the camp. It calls for the building of another home. This time it is staff housing for our program director, Steve Collins and his family. Steve and Jen and their young son Mikel became a part of our team eight years ago. After a couple of years they were blessed by the birth of little Amy. This special family who have been so faithful to this ministry have graciously called a two bedroom trailer “home” during those eight years. It is now time that Mikel and Amy have their very own bedroom. This project has begun. It will be a log home which will have three bedrooms and a full basement (see picture on next page). Already we are seeing the Fingerprints of God just like when we built our home. For example, a friend donated his time and four-wheel drive backhoe to clear brush and stumps from the site. Next another friend came in with his dozier and dug out the basement for a price that barely covered the cost of his fuel. A Christian contractor who has (Continued on page 2)
Summer Camp Report
Steve Collins Program Director
It’s difficult to summarize an entire summer camp experience in a just a few words, so instead I’ll use just one: dynamic. Dynamic can mean a couple of things. Most commonly, dynamic means energetic or active. These words surely describe summer camp. It is seven weeks of non-stop activity. But the word dynamic is also used in physics to describe “motive force.” This applies even more to our summer camp because God is that motive force which stirs the hearts of the young people, and it is He alone which brings about change in their lives. Our theme this summer was “Finding New Life.” Each day we focused on what it means to have new life in Christ. Campers were given the opportunity for all sorts of new experiences and activities. But as they were moving about during the day, the Holy Spirit was moving about in their hearts and minds. The result was that campers experienced the power of God in their lives. Many of them left camp at the end of the week totally transformed by the love of Christ. You can read some of their stories on our website at www.SMCC-online.com. Just click on “Current Activities” and then go to “Campfire Stories.”
Camp News •
Ten Most Wanted
We’ve started construction on our new staff house! This three-bedroom home will provide much needed space for Steve and his family to continue living on camp. Pray with us that God will provide the funds, materials, and volunteer labor to finish this project in a timely manner. In our last issue, our “Ten Most Wanted” list asked for stackable chairs for the Joy Center. Special thanks to Reggie Kellogg for meeting this need. We also expressed a need last time for two new office computers. Bobby Watson and Mike and Teresa McCraw donated two computers that met this need. We are in urgent need of volunteers who can commit to helping with cleaning one day per week through our retreat season. If you are interested, please contact the camp office at 828-245-3322. Our Fall retreat season looks to be our busiest yet, and groups are already scheduling retreats for Spring. In addition, we have more school groups than ever before participating in our nature program. If you would like to schedule a weekend retreat at SMCC, call us today!
Following is a list of the top ten items needed by SMCC . These are in addition to our month-to-month expenses. Study the list and prayerfully consider contributing to any of these items. 1.
Staff House (funds, materials, and volunteers).
Full-size pickup truck.
Tractor (40 horsepower minimum).
Twelve-foot mowing deck.
New performance puppets for chapel programs.
Walk-in cooler for cafeteria.
150 plastic stackable chairs for cafeteria.
Heavy-duty table saw.
10. Volunteers for cafeteria, cleaning & maintenance.
A year ago we enclosed a “Ministry Perks” card from Family Christian Stores in the newsletter. The benefits have been greater that we ever imagined. So far we’ve received over $400 in merchandise certificates which were used to purchase curriculum and supplies for summer camp. Please continue using these cards or call us if you need another one.
Captain’s Corner (continued from page 1) done other work for the camp poured the basement walls (solid concrete) and the basement floor. He also waterproofed the basement walls – all at a big savings for the camp. Another friend installed the necessary plumbing before the basement floor could be poured. A local electrical contractor donated a temporary power poll to provide electricity to the site. This saved us a lot of money. Everyone involved admits the timely way in which all these various projects came together was divinely orchestrated. Even the building inspectors showed up precisely when needed. We still have a long way to go to get the Collins family in this new home, but the same God who has so faithfully seen us through for the past thirty-three years will do so till the end. Please stand with us in your prayers. If any of you feel God’s leading to be a part of this project, please let us know.
Prayerfully, by the time you get our next newsletter in early 2006, we will be able to give you a full report on what great things God has done! This staff home has top priority on projects that need to be done. However our faith does not stop here. We are trusting God for two more new buildings which will be similar to our Dewey Fern Lodge to be built in time for next year’s camping season. This would make room for about fifty more campers. Some friends and supporters have expressed interest in being a part of these two projects.
Drawing of new Staff House.
The ministry of South Mountain Christian Camp has already grown far beyond the vision God first gave Charlotte and I. So has our faith in God. We are here to serve Him as He provides and gives direction. To Him be given all the Glory! May God bless and draw each of you closer to Him during these trying days.
CALL 828-245-3322 TO ORDER THESE CDS TODAY!
A JAZZY CHRISTMAS
This instrumental CD of classic Christmas songs includes a bonus track sung by Amber Lee. Available for purchase only through SMCC for a donation of any amount.
The long-awaited premiere by Amber Lee is available Nov. 2005. The CD consists of 9 love songs. You can order this CD through SMCC for a donation of any amount.
by Donnie Haulk and Friends
by Amber Lee
NOTE: Donnie, son-in-law of O.A. & Charlotte, serves on our Board of Directors; and granddaughter Amber spent her teen years working at the Camp.
Jo Hoselton Office Manager
Camp is always fun for me; I love talking with the kids and acting silly with them. This year I asked some of them to write down what they thought of camp, and this is what some of them had to say:
“The people were really nice, and I also loved the ropes course, even though I was really scared. I also liked the games before chapel. They were really fun.”
“This is my seventh year here and I love it. I don’t really have a favorite part—I love it all. I can’t wait ‘till next year.”
“This camp is cool. I love it, and I hope I can come back next year.”
—Sara, age 13
—Tammy, age 13
—Chiareek, age 14
I love everything about camp. I will tell everyone I know about camp.” —Melanie, age 12
“This is my fourth year, and it won’t be my last. I really love camp and I am glad they created it. This is the best camp ever. I wish it was a whole summer.”
“I got saved Wednesday night at chapel, and then Friday I was baptized, and my old life is behind me gone forever. I enjoyed night swim and laughter with my cabin. That’s stuff I will miss.”
—Shanna, age 13
—Porsha, age 13
—Mallory, age 12
“I love SMCC. This is my sixth year, and I am looking forward to 3 more years. I loved doing the high ropes—they were so much fun. I also loved chapel and night swim.”
Charlotte Fish Executive Director
For a number of years now some of you have sent gifts to the Camp in memory or honor of a special person in your life. When we receive these special gifts, we send you an acknowledgement, and we send a card to the person you have named with your name and theirs on it. We have kept your name and the person you have remembered or honored in a special file. In 1998, our new computer program made it possible to record these donations in a special category. Starting this year, we would like to include a column listing these donations in our two Mountain Star publications. In 1998 we had 8. In 1999 we had 11. In 2000 we had 13. In 2001 we had 20. In 2002 we had 23. In 2003 we had 21. In 2004, we had 27. And so far this year in 2005 we have 12. Following is the list for this year:
Katerene Pecknic by Joyce Desantis
It gives us great joy that so many have chosen to remember or honor loved ones with a gift to South Mountain. If you would like to participate in this method of giving, be sure to send a note explaining your wishes along with your donation.
Paul & Bonnie Danforth by Mr. and Mrs. Carter Thornsbury. Jerry Jerrendt by Mr. and Mrs. John Clower.
Verda Scoggins by Vivian Sitton Verda Scoggins by Mr. and Mrs. Ray Haynes Verda Scoggins by Golden Girls Supper Club Jerry Bowen by Mr. and Mrs. J.W. Hegwood Jerry Bowen by Mr. and Mrs. James Hullender Jerry Bowen by Mr. and Mrs. Richard Reidl HONOR Dr. and Mrs. Joe Godfrey by Barbara Shuford Bill and Martha Debrule by Barbara Shuford Caroline and Lauren by Joyce Desantis
Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Bostic, NC 28018 Permit No. 2
South Mountain Christian Camp 1129 South Mountain Road PO Box 9 Bostic, NC 28018-0009
Phone: (828) 245-3322 Fax: (828) 245-1659 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Making a difference...one child at a time
We’re on the Web! www.SMCC-online.com
ADDRESS SERVICES REQUESTED
Steve Collins Program Director
People will often ask me what I love most about being in full time camp ministry. At first I found that question difficult to answer because I love every aspect of camp. We operate year-round and each changing season brings new challenges, expectations, and opportunities to minister. During the summer, I love doing summer camp. I love working with economically disadvantaged children. I love organizing the activities of camp. I love leading the nightly chapel services and teaching the campers about the love of Christ. I love mentoring and discipling the summer staff members. I love the contests, the swimming, the games, and the warm weather. Most of all I love seeing lives changed by the power of God. During the Fall, I love doing the SEEDS program. I love teaching outdoor science to children. I love taking a group of kids out of the classroom and into nature. I love having the opportunity to teach intelligent design to public school groups. I love the hiking, the exploring, the learning, and the cool weather. Most of all, I love seeing the light come on in a child’s mind as they discover the miracles of God’s creation.
During the winter, I love my job just as much. I love the weekly Bible studies taught by OA. I love writing the newsletters and monthly receipt letters to our supporters. I love speaking in churches and college classrooms telling others about the ministry of SMCC. I love writing and preparing the summer camp program. I love the planning, the anticipation, the winter retreats, and the snow. Most of all, I love hearing from someone who’s life was touched by God because of the time they spent at South Mountain. During the spring, I love the retreat season. I love working with groups from all church backgrounds and denominations. I love taking a group of young people on our Adventure Challenge Course to teach them about who they are in Christ. I love talking about the goodness of God over a cup of coffee. I love the stillness, the activity, the cool mornings, and the warm afternoons. Most of all, I love seeing how a little time spent away from the noise of life can make God’s voice so much clearer to his children. So I guess what I love most about my position in ministry is that God is always doing something new. Beyond that, I’m just a guy who loves his job.