The annual Lutherans @Uni camp is a great time for uni students and friends to connect. This year’s camp was held at Woodhouse, from August 11-13.
The theme for this year’s Lutheran students and friends camp was ‘the Four Loves’ of the Greek language: ‘storge’ meaning family affection, ‘philia’ meaning friendship, ‘eros’ meaning romantic love, and ‘agape’ meaning the unconditional love which God shows to us and which Christians are called to show to others.
Pastor Fraser Pearce got us started on the Saturday morning with a Bible study on the raising of Lazarus, drawing out the interplay of the four different loves throughout the story. Delving deeper, four guest speakers each shared their insights on the type of love with which they work on a daily basis. Julie Hahn shared some of the advice she gives in her role as a parental and family encourager, while Alison Rogers talked about love in Christian romantic relationships based on her experience as a marriage counsellor with Lutheran Care. Pastoral student Tom Krahling explored the views of various philosophers on the different types of friendship and what we can reasonably expect from each, and finally Pastor Wayne Boehm described the fatherly, gracious, and compassionate love of God, and the ways in which we can reflect this in our lives.
In the afternoon, after a daring and rather wet romp through the Challenge Hill obstacle course, Joanne Chamberlain from Blueprint Ministries and LCA New and Renewing churches led us in a reflective exercise on the importance of showing servant love to our neighbours in the direct physical sense – the people who live in our neighbourhoods and whom we encounter on a daily basis, and yet whom we can often be tempted to overlook in favour of the family and friends we stay in touch with online.
Throughout there were times set aside to ask questions, share impressions, and also to discuss and pray in smaller groups. A concert by Daniel Kitson and Ebony Bedford of songs relating to love was another highlight, and the evenings involved a lot of time to relax, chat, play board and card games, eat the delicious dinners provided by Lissy who catered for us, and of course spend some time out by the bonfire. After morning worship on Sunday, a discussion of ideas for further integrating young adult programs and activities, and a last fortifying bowl of soup, campers began to set off for home – though a few intrepid souls remained behind to see which of Woodhouse’s outdoor adventure opportunities might still be running in the drizzly afternoon.