Dear Camp Arcadia Friends,
As I reflect on my first summer on staff at Camp Arcadia, I am excited to share just a little bit of what this summer has meant to me.
Working on staff is a completely unique experience. Relationships are developed and bonds are created as people from across the country are thrust together in an environment that encourages deep connection. We are comforted in the fact that everyone we turn to believes in Jesus as their Savior. This faith connection encourages opening up to one another in ways we would not do in the world outside Arcadia. Opportunities for deep conversation are plentiful; conversations about God, passions, goals, futures, relationships, and more happen everyday. Nobody is afraid to be vulnerable and real with one another, as there is an immediate level of trust, one that could not be replicated anywhere else so quickly. These relationships are what make being on staff at Camp Arcadia such a life-changing experience.
These relationships truly last a lifetime. Once you are a part of the staff community, you are always are part of the staff community. Staff from years past embrace those who are just experiencing their first year. They encourage one another, share stories of experiences and pranks, and understand each other completely as no one else can. How blessed I am to be a member of this incredible community.
Let’s get real, never will you be more exhausted in your life. I don’t say this in a negative sense or to discourage anyone. I simply mean that you don’t really know what it means to work hard until you have worked on staff. I learned that I could push myself a lot further than I thought was ever possible, by leaning not only on other staff members, but learning to lean on God. When talking with Jordan Glenn, one of our crafty ladies this summer, she said something very similar. “Working of staff is equally exhausting and rewarding. Working with a great team of people makes the job amazing. It is the best community in any workplace that could ever exist. If you asked any first year staffer they would say that it was more challenging than they were expecting. It takes a lot of grit and drive. It takes a special person to make it through summer staff at Camp Arcadia.” And God delivered those special people this summer.
As I write these words, most of the summer staff are working through their last week at Camp. Everyone is already feeling nostalgic. So many memories have been made. So many friendships developed and lessons learned. We don’t want to leave. It is heartbreaking and there are going to be a lot of tears. Plans are already being made to visit one another and reunite. Friends back home and at school do not understand a summer at Camp Arcadia and so we cling tightly to one another, the ones with whom we share this experience. We worked hard and I am tired, but I would not trade this summer for anything in the world. It was a summer of growing in faith and in community, learning about myself and about others, and experiencing lots of fun. I will never be ready for it to end, but yet the end is here.
To all of you who support, attend, and care for Camp Arcadia. Thank You! Thank you all so much for giving us an amazing summer. To share with you and grow with you. To keep us company and give us laughs. We may be the ones working to make your weeks at Camp Arcadia enjoyable, but you have worked in our hearts and shown us Christian love as well. And we are all eternally grateful.
With so much love and gratitude,
Your 2016 media girl.