There were six Blueprint Ministries camps held during the recent winter school holidays. All offered the opportunity for fun, games and activities, alongside times of learning, worship and faith building.
Barossa CLW 2023, ‘Set Apart’
By Anneka Wilksch, Camp Director
Barossa Christian Life Week was held at Cornerstone College in Mount Barker from 10-14 July. With 64 campers, 30 leaders, 2 pastors, catering teams and many other hands to make light work, the energy on campus was hard to ignore. We were so blessed to have the support of local pastors, Pastor Adrian Kitson and Pastor Eugene Minge.
Our theme for camp this year was ‘Set Apart’, taking direction from 1 Peter 2:9. Through this we discussed what it means to be a royal priesthood and a holy nation, how Creation shows us who God created us to be and how The Fall came in and introduced darkness to the world. But ultimately through the perfect example of Jesus, and through His death and resurrection we are brought into His light and New Creation. We also looked at what it means to be called by God and how we can act on our Godly vocations, and how Godly habits and Christian community all helps us to better know our Lord God.
Camp had so much to offer in the form of a superhero themed game afternoon, game show night, trivia night, country and western dinner, family photo night, capture the flag and so much more. We also had a fabulous array of electives to allow our campers to learn about how they can show the glory of God through their passions and everyday activities. We had options such as sport, art, girl or guy time, worship, cooking and a Bible time elective that taught us about Christian living in today’s world. There were so many highlights from camp this year but overall, the energy and eagerness of our campers and leaders alike, to delve into the Word of God and endeavour to live in faith, was incredible to see. The Christ-centred relationships, care, and compassion that everyone had for one another highlighted just how much God is already evident in each of these people’s walks of life. We are so incredibly thankful to all of the people that supported us whether it was financially, by praying, by leading with us, encouraging our young people to attend camp, sponsoring somebody new, or baking biscuits for morning tea. We couldn’t have done it without you! We are so grateful to God and are already beaming with plans for next year! Bring on 2024! All the glory to God!
Hills CLW 2023, ‘Back 2 Basics’
By Zachary Sauerwald, Camp Director
Once again, Hills CLW was held at Unity College, Murray Bridge. This year’s theme was ‘Back 2 Basics’, where we went back to the roots of our belief and delved into the Gospel. Over the week, we explored ‘What is God?’, creation, God’s law and sin, Jesus and ‘What Now?’. We were extremely fortunate to have Pastor Joel Cramer oversee our theme, which not only allowed us to revisit these key concepts but also introduced them to some of our campers for the first time and filled in some gaps for campers and leaders alike.
A new experience for our camp was our time at the Murray Bridge Lutheran Village, where we made new friends from a different generation. We played games, learnt about each other’s lives and served hot drinks and food. Some campers even tried to outrun a mobility scooter but couldn’t keep up!
We were incredibly grateful to be provided with some delicious food throughout the week, and a HUGE thank you to Daniel Pietsch and Joey Traeger for heading up the kitchen this year. Our highlight was the kid’s party-themed finger food on Thursday night, which followed the ‘Kindy-Kids’ big game organised by Emma Klatt.
As we settled back into our lives outside of camp, we pray that everyone was able to reflect on their experience on camp and feel the desire to continue to grow in their relationships with our heavenly father. We are beyond thankful to the campers, leaders, cooks, chaplains, prayer warriors, pastor and everyone else who helped us make this camp the way it was. More importantly, we thank Jesus Christ for all He has done for us and pray that He will continue to use camps to shape the hearts and minds of all involved to be more like Him.
JC Life 2023, ‘Raise a Hallelujah’
By Jordan Schaefer, Camp Director
Our theme this year was ‘Raise A Hallelujah’. Each year we have campers who are new to faith and don’t understand why we have worship on camp and what it means. As Christians, praising and worshiping God for all he has done, His mercy and greatness is of high importance. Our Bible study focused on what worship and praise is, why we do it and how to do it. Delving into numerous Psalms, campers discussed ways they could worship God on camp, after camp, during worship and every other moment of their lives. In one of our last small group sessions the campers looked at how to praise in the middle of the storms of life, reminded of Job who was stripped of everything yet still turned and praised God.
Between small group sessions, leaders lead several bootcamp activities, ranging in low/high exercise. Leader Sophie ran a line dancing group, teaching a new line dance to Galway Girl by Ed Sheeran. This led to everyone standing up during meals and/or free times when the song came on. Leader Lachie took a bunch of campers for a walk along the lakeside hunting for bush turkeys, unfortunately no turkeys were found. Our leaders Emilie and Callum ran a well-received ‘Just Dance’ bootcamp. Despite taking on ‘Tetris’, ‘Who Let the Dogs Out’, ‘Waka Waka’ and SO many more, everyone who joined gave 110% energy to the dances and did not want to stop!
On the Tuesday of camp, the directors paired up the small groups and challenged them to a 5-way capture the flag. The catch? To tag the other players, you had to tap them with a coloured powder ball. With powder balls flying this way and that, this version of capture the flag encouraged all participants to be involved as everyone wanted to be the most colourful. Each team had a different colour which inspired most participants to try for the flag as they wanted to be hit with each colour. The few campers who didn’t want to run for the flag still had so much fun running around tagging everyone – including those on their own team! This ended up with a very colourful bunch of campers and leaders.
Tuesday night one of our leaders ran a night game outside called Commando. Campers had to race from one end of the campsite to the other without being spotted by the ‘spotters’ with torches. But to make their trek more difficult, they had to collect a couple items on their way including a sponge and a piece of costume to help them stand out more. If they were caught, they had to return their items and start again. We had rave reviews from many campers that it was the best part of camp.
The Wednesday outdoor game required campers and leaders to assemble in groups, with their running shoes on. In their groups, they had to run around flipping sports cones over in one direction while another small group flipped them in the opposite direction. To add extra difficulty, there were a couple of designated taggers in each group, if you were caught it became a game of stuck in the mud as you waited for a team mate to save you so you could resume play. There were a number of campers who enjoyed targeting their leaders and chasing after them.
This year we ran our first ever worship electives which led to a camper-involved worship on the Wednesday evening of camp. Campers had the opportunity to choose between prayers, faith statement/creed, arts & craft, poem/psalm, dance, bible study, nature appreciation walk. We had an incredible number of brave campers stand up and present what they learnt and worked on during their elective time! We couldn’t be prouder.
On the final night, we held a banquet. Everyone dressed up in an array of 80’s disco/colourful clothes ready to boogey it out on the dance floor, and boogey they did. The hall was decked out with disco ball balloons, fairy lights, streamers, slinkies and glow in the dark moustaches. Following the feast, leader Lachie ran a Taskmasters themed challenge, which consisted of many different objects being guessed, thrown and drawn.
Many thanks to those who supported camp, whether that was through donations, catering, sponsoring a camper or many other ways. We greatly appreciate it. Also a massive thank you to the fantastic leadership team!
Lower Murray South East CLW, ‘Immanuel, God With Us’
By Bethanie Mann, Camp Director
LMSE CLW 2023 was an absolute blast, with over 50 campers and 20 leaders joining us! This year we looked at the theme of ‘Immanuel, God With Us’, exploring how nothing can separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39). We started our days off strongly with morning ‘rev-up’, getting our blood pumping with sessions run by the Wiggles (or at least people who looked very similar), our directors, Shak, and Pastor Shaun. Pastor Mitch and Pastor Shaun led the campers in talks tracing God’s journey to His people starting in the Garden of Eden, journeying through the Old and New Testaments, and ending in Revelation. Small-group time followed the talks and allowed campers to unpack, reflect upon, and ask questions about the content covered.
Games this year followed the theme of “Mission Manager” in which campers had a great time running around in groups completing missions/tasks to collect points. Messy games once again were a highlight, with campers completing tasks involving great quantities of slime, shaving cream, and baked beans. Campers who chose not to participate in messy games enjoyed a quiz/game-show session, which ended in a surprise water-balloon ambush on the messy-campers, and an opportunity to tip slime on the leaders.
Elective time allowed campers the opportunity to choose both a faith-based activity, such as a prayer walk, discerning spiritual gifts, Bible 101 and apologetics, and a fun elective like a beach walk, bush dancing, crafts, cooking and outdoor sports. Elective sessions were followed by girl/guy time, where campers could spend time unpacking general and gender-specific questions in a safe space.
Other camp highlights included reflective night, where campers reflected on the significance and impact of the Christmas story, and community night, where campers stayed up late playing games and talking by the fire. ‘Christmas in July’ theme night was another hit, with everyone donning funky Christmas costumes and leaders serving campers their dinner surrounded by Christmas decorations.
This year also brought about the semi-retirement of long-time leader Shak, who after leading on 34 LMSE CLW’s is passing the baton (in the form of his famous lolly container) onto his son.
We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to all who prayed for and supported the camp, and our praise and thanks to God for the good weather, safety and growth in faith. It truly was an amazing camp, and we cannot wait for LMSE CLW 2024.
Metro CLW, ‘Kingdom, Power, Glory’
By Nicole Pfeiffer, Metro CLW Camp Director
This year’s Metro CLW saw us embark on a trip to Port Hughes where we spent the week unpacking the Lord’s Prayer and prayer with Pastor Tim Ebbs. We had a great week in our worship and small group sessions discussing how God’s kingdom is here now and how we can live in full freedom in him as we give him the glory. We also had a great time playing some medieval themed games, learning more about some faith fundamentals from our workshop leaders and building deeper connections in our girl and guy times.
We want to thank everyone on camp and off camp for supporting us and the camping ministry. We have loved every minute of Metro CLW 2023 and can’t wait to do it again next year. For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now and forever, amen!
Riverland CLW, ‘Talking With God’
By Emma Strelan, Camp Director
Riverland CLW was blessed to have a marvellous leadership team and amazing bunch of campers this year. Our theme was ‘Talking With God’, or in other words, prayer! In small group time, we looked at the what, why, when and how of prayer. Then each day, our speaker, Tom, explored one aspect of the Lord’s Prayer. It was so good to see campers of every age group engaging with and being challenged by this part of faith.
On Tuesday afternoon the boys really got into Lego construction while the girls enjoyed painting ceramic mugs. Wednesday afternoon was the highlight of camp for many because we played colour games. Campers were split into small groups and had to complete a variety of challenges involving messy colour powder. Not unexpectedly, the afternoon ended in all-out colour chaos. On Wednesday evening we had a special worship service involving camper participation – it included everything from playing in the band, to writing prayers and a faith statement, to performing an interpretive dance. It was wonderful to see the campers find the parts of worship that they most connected with, and get to contribute in that way. On Thursday we ran some general electives which included pizza making (a delicious lunch was in store that day!). And on the final night we celebrated the week that was by holding a theme night which saw many creative interpretations of ‘royalty’ and was followed by lots of dancing and chats by the fire buckets.
The Riverland CLW leaders had a superb week, and judging by the smiles on the campers’ faces, they did too. We thank God for how he showed so much of his power and love to many people on camp, and pray that extends to everyone involved as they return back to their homes and families.
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