As you prepare to leave for summer camp this year, you may have many different emotions: excitement for what lies ahead, apprehension about leaving your friends and family or even nervousness because you don’t know any other campers. If you are having thoughts such as these, then it’s time to ask Jesus to open your heart to all that you are about to encounter at camp. Here is a little advice to get the most out of camp.
First, it is very tempting to cling to what is comfortable, but remember you are at camp to have new experiences and meet new people. Jesus is drawing you out of your familiar routine for a reason, because he wants you to participate in all that camp has to offer. So set aside your thoughts and concerns for your home life and be present for every moment of camp.
Second, go all in at camp. Talk to the campers from other parishes and learn more about their faith and their lives. Make the most of small group time and share what is in your heart. By being open you will gain so much from camp and it will also deepen your faith.
Third, try not to compare your camp week to others. Your week is yours and yours alone. Don’t get caught up in trying to have the same exact feelings or adventures as the other campers. Make it your week to get closer to God, while having all kinds of amazing new experiences.
Lastly, the lessons of summer camp do not end once you leave. The Jesus you encounter at camp is the same Jesus that resides back home. Take what you have learned at camp and make the most of your weekly mass, youth group and home life.