St Andrew Blog

St. Andrew Summer Camp

summercamp

Two Camps in One!

St. Andrew Kinder Camp is this week, which means that 23 three-, four- and five-year-olds are having a great time playing with playdough, telling stories, painting, doing crafts, playing on the playground and so much more!

What it also means, is that in addition to our wonderful adult volunteers, we have approximately 40 youth ages 10 and up helping make all of that happen!  We couldn't do Kinder Camp without them.

We have also known that for Kinder [and Day Camps] we are running two parallel camps, but this year we are investing even more in our helpers by offering a leadership track in the middle of the day. It's just 40 minutes or so, but we are talking about the gifts and talents God gave them, learning how effective teams work and how good leaders lead! And we're having lots of fun along the way!

Thanks to Christy Londreville for putting together some lesson plans from her experience doing this with youth in private schools. And thanks to all of you who support summer camps in so many ways. We are not only sharing the story with little ones, we are also investing in youth who are already leaders!

Mountain Camp 2014

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Last week, 13 middle school youth and 4 adults traveled to Camp Calumet on beautiful Ossipee Lake in New Hampshire for mountain camp. The week was filled with camp wide games, a downpour, hiking, swimming, canoeing, and really tasty food.

Hunter Humeston performed magic at the talent show with his assistant Alison Klein who sang Kelly Clarkson after the magic tricks. Kali Vanderlaan was the glue that encouraged and held our group together during Rob World: a low ropes obstacle course. Greg Possemato introduced the group to one of his favorite bands Skillet: a heavy metal rock band. And Seth Brown bought 10 packets of Swedish fish at the snack bar.

The group had the opportunity to be creative when they took materials from nature in order to create something that communicated why it's important to care for God's creation. We wrote songs about the pressure they experience as teens. We also took different materials to create something that communicates something we think, believe, or are passionate about or something we do not think, believe, or are passionate about. Take a look at some of the pictures of the creations below!

It was a good week disconnecting from the noise of the world and being immersed into creation and intentional community at camp.

Brett and Joanna's Wedding Celebration

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On Friday, the partners at St. Andrew had a potluck dinner in celebration of Brett and my recent wedding. We were expecting a calm potluck, but calm is not how St. Andrew throws a party!

We were dressed up as a bride and groom with the most hilarious wedding party—people dressed as m&m’s, in their bathrobes, even someone covered in neon green, and so many more costumes! Jack Weber dressed as a Bishop and made us say vows that I did not agree with. Finally, it came time to cut the cupcake and Brett somehow managed to get more icing on me than I did on him. Womp.

Brett and I cannot thank all of you enough for such a fun evening. We treasure the quilt that was made for us and already have it on our bed, and we are still speechless at all the donations that came in for our gift. We cannot thank all of you enough for the way you wrapped us in love and support as we begin married life together!

A Book Study Without Rules

bookstudySo we’ve been having some really interesting conversations.  They are open-ended, sometimes rambling conversations with no pre-planned questions or assignment of chapters from the book, Take This Bread. We all share as we wish, no matter how many chapters we’ve read—or even if we haven’t read any at all!

We just come and talk about what touched us, or interested us, or made us wonder.  We bring quotes from other writers that reinforce some of the themes in Sarah Miles’ book. We share stories of growing up in the Catholic Church--or Methodist, or Lutheran.  We talk about both the pain and the joy of those foundational church experiences.  We make connections to St. Andrew and how we do what we do.  We try to get a little clearer about where God might be calling us in terms of how we experience, talk about,  and understand faith.

Last night we discussed how radical it was for Sarah Miles to take communion that first time and how it changed her life.  She experienced God in her flesh and it compelled her to act.  In her case, she soon opened a big food pantry at her church, St. Gregory’s in San Francisco.  She writes,

“It was about action.  Taste and see, the Bible said, and I did. 

I was tasting a connection between communion and food—between my burgeoning religion and my real life.  My first questioning year at church ended with a question whose urgency would propel me into work I’d never imagined:  Now that you’ve taken the bread, what are you going to do?”

We liked the question.  We liked the challenge it left us with to respond to grace with grace.  We liked the equalizing effect of being always simultaneously receivers of grace, of bread, of God AND givers—passing on what we receive to others.

Come join the conversation:  Wednesday at 6:30.