Glory be to God, St. Xenia Camp was a great success once again this year! Our Orthodox youth came together at a campground nestled in a picturesque forest in the state of Maine to socialize, connect with old friends and make new ones, hike, canoe, make crafts, play games and have fun. At the same time – and, most importantly – they were given the opportunity to make spiritual connections, pray, reflect upon that which is central to our lives as Orthodox Christians and grow in the Lord, together.
This year’s theme was “Living for God.” Younger campers were encouraged to consider what this means, how it manifests itself day-to-day, and how it shapes the decisions we make in life. For the older campers as well as counselors, the sub-theme, “Marriage and Monasticism” brought into focus important questions that they either are facing or will be facing in the relatively near future. Clergy-lead discussions were often lively and allowed campers and staff to delve more deeply into the Orthodox teaching on the life in Christ.
Recent years have seen the number of campers grow rapidly and this year we have reached an all-time high. St. Xenia camp was officially filled to capacity in 2019! Campers come from all over the USA and, this year, we made great strides toward covering the length of Canada. It was a particularly special blessing to have two counselors and a camper join us all the way from Palestine.
As always, the camp was run with skill and efficiency and the activities were well-organized and a great source of comradery. The arts and crafts projects that were carefully planned out and made available for campers to work on produced beautiful mementos of the week. Finally, earning great praise every year is the food and this year it was, once again, quite delicious.
The campers and staff spent a good deal of time praying together and we were blessed to be joined in the second half of the week by Metropolitan Demetrius. Glory be to God for this opportunity! May God bless all those who labored for the success of this camp and may He continue to bestow His Grace upon us and upon our children through this camp named for the Holy Blessed Xenia of St. Petersburg!
Note: For a comprehensive photo gallery featuring over 1000 additional photos from our talented parishioner Brendan Richmond of St. Seraphim of Sarov Parish, please click here (note: link will take you off of our site).
Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church is a beautiful mission parish near downtown Tucson, a city in southern Arizona. It was started in 1997 by Father John Bockman, who was a missionary Priest formerly serving missions in Tennessee and Massachusetts since 1990. Father John served the faithful in Tucson and the surrounding area in his home Chapel until his repose in November of 2000. His wife, Presbytera Valerie, continued to make her home Chapel available for the mission, with clergy from Saint Nectarios Orthodox Church in Seattle and His Eminence, Metropolitan Moses of Toronto (then of Portland), visiting to provide the Divine Services.Read more...