By: Maran Halverson
Have you ever stuffed 12 marshmallows in your mouth at once? Or watched shooting stars at 2am? Or eaten pudding through pantyhose? Or had a food fight with week old oatmeal? Or dressed up like a clown for dinner?
At Camp Cherith, these are just everyday, “normal” activities. Campers and staff alike have the opportunity to be their goofy, authentic selves while learning new skills, making lifelong friendships, and getting pushed outside their comfort zones.
Camp Cherith has been an essential and life changing part of my life for over fourteen years. Like many other staff and campers at Cherith, this camp has impacted my spiritual life, friendships, and sense of adventure in countless ways. As a camper, I had the chance to learn fun skills such as archery, kayaking, outdoor cooking, guitar, and water skiing. Camp also created a safe space that encouraged me to try things I would have never tried at home. If you had told my nine-year-old self that someday as a camp staff member I would dress up in an 80’s business suit and charge through the camp dining hall holding a live duck as part of a skit, I would have said you were nuts. But somehow the environment and community at Camp Cherith fosters a sense of goofiness and fearlessness – all while confirming that no matter what, we are all fully and equally loved by Christ.
The staff that poured their time, energy, and love into me at camp ensured that I connected each activity back to my relationship with God. The schedule at Cherith provides a perfect balance of having tons of fun, making connections, and learning about Christ in different settings. As a camper, Cherith provided a refreshing reminder of my identity and worth. Then as a staff member, Cherith provided me with the opportunity to pour prayer and biblical truth into campers while they in turn taught me about faith and authenticity.
Volunteering at Camp Cherith to prepare it for the summer is a wonderful ministry opportunity because it gives you the chance to invest in and serve its many staff and campers. Cherith is truly an incredible place, and I think that investing your time, energy, and prayer into this camp will reap incredible rewards this summer. AKA if you haven’t signed up to volunteer over Memorial Day Weekend, GO DO IT! I can guarantee you’ll have a blast and that your efforts will make a huge difference!