Train up a child in the way he (or she) should go, and when he (or she) is old s/he will not depart from it. (Prov. 22:6)
Several years ago Gaynell suggested we combine our assorted grandkids and take them all to family camp at Lutherhill where I had retired as Executive Director a few years earlier. Gaynell and I are related by virtue of having married first cousins. That makes our grandchildren second cousins to one another. What with assorted divorces and remarriages the potential gang that can go to family camp with us in any given year is now a very complicated diagram of cousinship. However, they all know two things: 1) They love going to Lutherhill and 2) they’re all related somehow.
Ten of us just spent another few days together. I continue to be astounded at the impact these sacred acres, combined with the staff and other campers, have on these young people. This year my part of the group consisted of me, one granddaughter now on summer staff and assigned to host us, another of my granddaughters, a step-cousin by virtue of a remarriage on the part of their father’s sister and two grandsons in the LYLE (Lutheran Youth Leadership Experience) program. They wanted to return to this high school training program so badly that they raised the cost of their transportation from Ohio to Texas plus the registration fees. They had a LOT of help from their friends and fans.
I interviewed for the position as director of Lutherhill back in 1996. I remember standing in my Ohio kitchen telling the man who eventually offered me the position, “I really want to take this position because I want Lutherhill to be there for my grandkids.” At the time I had only two grandchildren – ages eighteen months and five months old. The five-month old was our family camp host staff this year. Every grandchild has been to the place many, many times both because we lived there for a while and because they’ve attended various camp programs over the twenty years.
My prayer that the camp would be there for my grandkids has been answered on steroids. The impact camp has had on each one of them cannot be measured or adequately defined. All I know is that I am beyond grateful I got a chance to be there and I am doubly beyond grateful all my grandkids have spent time on that holy ground.
Thank you Lutherhill for another amazing summer camp experience. Y’all done good.