Merry Christmas from all your friends at The Vineyard Camp. It’s been a very long year for many of us, but we stand in awe of how God has carried us through some storms, and then blessed us beyond what we expected or deserved.
We pray that your season of celebrating the coming of the Christ-child is full of laughter, joy, peace and His unsurpassed love. This is the time to thank God for not only the joy of the season, but the certainty that we will one day enjoythe presence of our Savior forever.
We have grown at our camp and now havenine souls living at the camp—-along withthe camp’s mascots—Amos, Abraham,Gabriel, and of course our wolf, Sheba. Itis our wolf that has grown the most (she isnow eight months old) and that has caughtthe affection of all the people that visithere. Some folks are not “into” pets—-letalone a wolf, but once you are befriended by a wolf and lived with one for a while, you see them, and all pets, a bit differently.
(Sheba tends to “borrow” things when you’re not watching....)So from the smallest dachshund, to our wolf, and from Cobi, Brent, Don, Marianne, Eric, Tyler,
Tommy, Greg and Dean—may God bless you—everyone—this Christmas season!
From Dean’s Desk The Day After....
For many years it was the day after Christmas that I felt the lowest. I am probably not alone in this sentiment; after all the gifts have been given away, the “big day” is over, the parties have ceased and now the credit card invoices are being emailed to me. All the build-up since Thanksgiving has now come to an end. It’s a bit hard to get excited about December 26.
But something has been changing in my heart over the past four years. I have found a deep well of both hope and joy as challenges have drawn me closer to Him. I wake up knowing two things that make all the difference in the world to me: I have hope because I know that He will not let me go—I can recite the times over the past forty-eight months He has proven to me that He won’t let go. And yes, I’ve gripped His hand until my knuckles were white a few times, but I am secure and safe in His hand. I know it, I have experienced, He has proven Himself to me.
And I have joy, each day, knowing that He really does want to give me the very desires of my heart. He has not forgotten His promises to me, He has heard my prayers, He will not forsake me, and He will give me those things that I have desired for so long. That is the well that I draw from each day. And this knowledge allows me to face my lions and my Goliaths.
Am I ready for all those “desires”? In my opinion, Yes! But time and time again, after He has finally given me those good things that I have so desired in my heart, I have found that I received them at the proper time and praise God that I did not get them earlier!
So the question comes to me quite simply: Do I trust His timing? And again, I know from my past experiences with God that His timing is perfect.
And so when I wake on the day after the most celebrated day in the year, I can have real joy and sincere hope for an incredible day, feeling sure that my tomorrow is secure and know that His timing in life is perfect.
We’ve been growing steadily since the devastating days of covid. Our camp grew about 25% this past summer, and we expect to grow another 50% this coming summer! All sessions are still open, but the last big discount is about to pass after Christmas.
If you need help financially, our camp is alwayshappy to assist as much as we can, but you need to letus know now. We have to find sponsors, and “scholarship” places are limited each week. In addition, the most popular programs are for “Apprentices” (15 year olds) and “Leaders (16-18 year olds), and we have a lot more foreign kids applying for those places. These programs also offer a steep discount in tuition!
Let us know when you want to come and how long you hope to stay!
2024 Summer Staff News
We’re just now beginning to hire staff for 2024, but if you were a camper here in 2023, Greg would really like to know who your favorite staff were—and why. A Vineyard staff must be a disciple of Jesus Christ, at least eighteenyears old, able to teach a sport to campers,
and must love helping children from all over the world!
We need one staff for every two campers, so we need a lot of staff! Let us know if you, or someone you know, might like to help us this coming summer.
Before the 2024 season arrives, we would like to know two things from our campers:
What are your favorite programs/sports at our camp?
Which of the programs or sports that we offer do you not plan on attending?
Our goal is to offer the best and remove the rest! Give us your ideas please. Send these to: email@example.com
As a non-profit, we depend upon donations from those that love our work and believe in our ministry. At the time this newsletter was written, the gifts from 2023 increased about 13% over the past year—a total of $265,000 has been donated.
These gifts are used almost exclusively to help campers attend our camp that cannot afford full tuition. The other gifts are designated to a project or line item.
But it’s not too late! If you are to support our camp before the end of year, please send your gift by Zelle, Venmo, credit card, check or wire transfer! Just contact us for information. (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Merry Christmas and Happy New Years!
We are thankful for all our friends, and donors that continue to support us in our mission year after year of spreading the call of Christs discipleship to children and youth all over the world !
Many children have signed up for this upcoming summer and we are ecstatic. (This year camper enrollment should increase by 25%)So sign up soon if you want to join us !
(We will be offering one month and two month packages soon at a discounted rate!)
Pray for The Vineyard Camp as we approach the new year, as we begin to prepare our facilities for this summer, and continue to push our capital drive campaign.
We hope everyone has a happy holidays and Merry Christmas!
The Rev Dean Barley Chairman
Dr. Wayne Guida Vice- Chairman
Mr. Tommy Walker Treasurer
Mr. Chris Leftakis Secretary
Mr. Chris Clark
The Honorable Chris Dillon
Dr. Bill Greenwood
(Dean practicing his holiday pranks.)