As boys grow up and transition into men, they are desperately looking for role models to follow. Our staff have many responsibilities, but at the end of the day, their real task is to build relationships with boys and point them toward Jesus. Our staff are not perfect, nor do they have the answers to all of life's questions. They are simply college students whose lives have been changed by the gospel of Jesus Christ and his grace and love.
At Camp, our goal is for boys to both hear that story and rub shoulders with men who've been changed by it. We are not a "platform-driven ministry", meaning that we don't have a camp speaker who does all the talks and we don't bring in a band to lead worship each night. Instead, we want campers to hear the story of Jesus in a variety of settings from a variety of voices. Here are some of the ways campers hear about God and his love at Camp Ridgecrest:
Each morning after breakfast, campers go with their age group to their own special "chapel" around camp, where they are led in some fun camp songs and a devotion from one of the counselors. Each summer, these morning watch talks follow a theme. The themes over the past few summers have included "Men of the Bible" and "Miracles of the Bible".
Following Morning Watch, campers are given time to reflect on what they've heard. This time isn't long, as boys have energy and are ready to go for the day. But it's important to stop and take a few minutes. Campers are given a small guide that gives them questions to think about things they can pray about or reflect upon.
Evening Cabin Devotions
Each day, campers end the day back in the cabin; just the 10 campers and 2 counselors, and they talk through the story of Jesus' life. This material is age-appropriate and presented as a story and leads to discussion that allows campers to ask questions and take it at their own pace.
Each Thursday night, all of camp gathers around the campfire and we sing songs with Ron and hear a message from someone on camp leadership. At the end of Campfire, there is no "altar call", but campers are encouraged to find their counselor and talk to them about whatever is on their heart. This time is often very impactful and memorable for campers, especially as they get older.
On Sunday morning, we go up to the chapel for the closest thing we have to a "traditional" worship service. Church is high energy and it's common to see campers on the shoulders of their counselors dancing down front. Music is led by counselors and the Camp Pastor gives a message.
Disclaimer: Our campers come from many different backgrounds, faith experiences and denominations. Camp is not the place for deep theological debates that differentiate between these denominational backgrounds. Our goal is to clearly and simply present the Gospel and story of Jesus Christ.