All Are Welcome!
Wednesday Lenten Service February 21st at Bethel Lutheran Church in Little Falls
Soup Supper @ 5:15 pm
Service @ 6:15 pm
All are Welcome!
Pastor Kari Pancoast
P.O. Box 35,
36055 213th Street
Hillman, MN 56338
EMAIL : email@example.com
How To Find Us:
Immanuel Lutheran Church of Hillman is located at the intersection of County Hwy 27 and County Hwy 47. It is one mile west of County 8.
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
I am writing this letter while at Camp Onomia with the youth from Immanuel and while looking ahead to a week at Christikon with the youth from Bethel. So, the importance of Bible Camp is on my mind as I see in real time how wonderful it is for our young people and their growing in faith and in their identity as children of God!
Camp Onomia is the ELCA Bible camp that Bethel and Immanuel are members of, meaning we are a part of the corporation that provides for and supports camp with our time and talents and resources. I am in my last year of serving two six-year terms on the camp board of directors and am currently serving as the president. Many of you are familiar with Camp Onomia, but if you aren’t, I encourage you to check out the camp website (www.camponomia.org) or if you would like to stop by for a visit, I’ll happily go with you and show you around! Camp Onomia is just outside of Onamia, near Mille Lacs Kathio State Park. We are very fortunate to have it so close by!
Christikon is another of our ELCA Bible camps and is located in the Custer Gallatin National Forest, about 45 miles south of Big Timber, Montana in the mountains of Absaroka Beartooth Wilderness. I am so excited to take our Bethel group to spend a week at Christikon! It is a beautiful place! If you’re curious about where we will be, you can see more on the website (www.christikon.org).
I love and value camping ministry in general and have spent much time going to Bible Camp wherever I have served, but Camp Onomia and Christikon are especially dear to my heart. I worked at Camp Onomia the four summers I was in college and my time there played a huge role in my realizing my call to ordained ministry. And my own kids have spent many summers at Christikon both going as campers and then working on staff.
I have seen over and over again how time at Bible camp has a wonderful impact on young people and their growing in faith and discipleship through the Bible Study, prayer, music, games, skits, quiet time, hiking, canoeing, and all kinds of other fun, meaningful and crazy activities. It is amazing to see the transformation over the week. The kids often start out hesitant and a little unsure but over the week as they participate and even lead in different ways, I see them grow more confident in who they are as children of God and how they are called to love and serve others. It is an amazing transformation to witness!
Camping ministry is such an important ministry as it is a way to experience God’s grace, love, and mercy in a way that doesn’t happen anywhere else! Bible camp is an intentional Christian community where daily life is shaped by our faith practices of devotion and prayer, service, faith talk, and playing together.
There are 119 Bible Camps, or Outdoor Ministry Sites, in the ELCA. And as our presiding bishop says, they are vital in the faith life of our church.
“Our Lutheran Outdoor Ministries provide places to engage people of all ages with the beauty of God’s creation and programs that enrich faith formation. These camping and retreat opportunities allow space and time for deeper reflection on relationships and promote unique leadership skills in young adults. Our church camps and retreat centers are a gift to the ministry of the ELCA and vitally important in the development of faith and care for creation.”
— ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton
We experienced wonderful and meaningful time of growing in faith and in our relationships with each other as a family of faith, both at Camp Onomia and on our canoe trip with Wilderness Canoe Base last year. I am currently witnessing this in action as I spend time with our Immanuel girls this week. And I can’t wait to be part of the Bethel kids’ time at Christikon.
I can’t thank you enough for your support and encouragement of our young people. People of Bethel and Immanuel Lutheran Churches, you are wonderful!