Friday, August 31, 2007

Sacred Time, Camp, and St. Arseny

I grew up going to Summer Camp. Every year. Days and nights at camp were the fulcrom of the year, and initiated me from my earliest days into the mystery of sacred time. Though I didn't grow up with a highly articulated notion of the liturgical seasons, they were still there, lurking under the weight of a decade of sleeping bags, bug spray, and match-stick crafts. From age zero to five, my family spent summers at Silver Lake Wesleyan Camp in Ontario. All six of us slept in tents for two months. I took my first steps there, in a cottage belonging to our friends. From five until seventeen, the Nazarenes rented Camp Charis near Chilliwack, British Columbia. Most of the pivotal moments of my youth were there.

I think this year marks the fourth annual St. Arseny Camp in the Deanery of British Columbia. I am absolutely amazed by the growth of this tremendous ministry to the young people there in BC. You have to see these pictures to believe it! The dedicated volunteer staff of this camp should be given accolades of thanks. A new generation has the opportunity to encounter the beauty and goodness of God amidst trees, lakes, and rivers.

This Camp, we should remember, is fittingly dedicated to our own St. Arseny of Canada, Archbishop of Winnipeg from 1926-1945. Though he has not been formally canonized by the Church, we here in Canada know how well Christ shone in him. He was even shot (in the "leg") while serving the Divine Liturgy! But he continued to serve, and because of his eloquence, became known as the "Canadian Chrysostom." So, for those of you who don't know him, please meet St. Arseny, and remember his Camp if you would.





Fr. John serving the Proskomedia for the kids to see the Gifts being prepared and the special prayers said.

Glory to God for All Things!

2 Comments:

Blogger kimberley francis said...

Yeah some important beginnings you speak of, Matt.

10:39 PM  
Blogger Simply Victoria said...

you write so well matthew.
have you submitted this piece to the orthodox messenger?

camp was absolutely amazing.
I think you and Krista should come next year.
a last hurrah before you leave the continent.

11:11 PM  

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