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Christians are called to care for God’s creation. That was the Pope’s message at Mass this Monday morning at the Casa Santa Marta (Colombia).
“God works, continues to work, and we can ask ourselves how we should respond to this creation of God, which is born of love, because he works through love. In the ‘first creation’ we must respond with the responsibility that the Lord gives us: ‘The earth is yours, take it forward; let it grow.”- Pope Francis (2/9/15)
At Camp Westminster on Higgins Lake, we understand the importance of preserving and nurturing creation; the gift God has so lovingly given us. Our programming focuses on educating campers (our future community and world leaders) on the importance of being stewards of the environment. From our camp compost to our recycling and our recent attempts at ‘upcycling,’ campers help contribute to a community that is focused on enjoying the gifts of creation. When campers spend time with us on Higgins Lake they are blessed with a raw experience of creation. Waking up to a sunrise over the East side of the lake, splashing in the crystal clear waters, paddling in the coldness of the stream, the whiff of pine needles on the journey to the campfire, the busy sound of a downy woodpecker during FOB when all else is quiet, and the dazzling display of the night sky illuminated like you’ve never seen before. The more time our campers spend in creation, the more they appreciate it and foster a responsibility to care for it and let it grow. Just recently we were blessed with a visit from a camp Alumni who recalled the smell of the pine trees as he walked down the road at camp for the first time in years which triggered a rush of memories he had of his time spent here as a boy. The closer we get to nature, the closer we can get to ourselves and God. Pope Francis taught us this week that it is our Christian responsibility to protect creation and let it grow, because we have a duty to care about the work of God. As we enter our 90th Summer, we will continue to encourage campers to experience God’s love which has been shown through creation. A creation in which we can learn more about our Creator, where we can worship, make new friends, and continue to help it grow for future generations. By Matt Hill, Program Director