Dedication of Lavery Hall - May 18, 2003
Rain, stormy skies and a tornado watch did
not prevent the celebration at Camp Christian as nearly 100 people gathered
to dedicate the new and improved facilities. In addition, Rev. Carol Lavery,
retired associate regional minister in Georgia, was honored for her many
years of ministry to children and youth at Camp Christian with the official
naming of the dining room as Lavery Hall. It was a special day for Carol
and her family as they shared memories and visited with friends from across
the region. Dr. Jim Collins brought the message during the worship service—citing
that the camp should be a place of peace where God’s people can come and
“rejoice in the Lord always”. (Philippians 4:4)
Rev. Michael Weeks spoke of the emotion involved
in the culmination of this first step toward a bright future at Camp Christian
and the joy of Michael and Michelle as they await the imminent birth of
their first child. He also shared that the work is not done. Reminding us
that we have a large mortgage which is currently being paid out of Sowing
Seeds monies, we still have a $100,000 in improvements that need to be made
in the next year which include: an outdoor pavilion for campers and a large
storage shed to protect our equipment that we have acquired over the last
couple of years.
In many different ways, the participants
were reminded that the camp ground is “holy ground” where the lives of children,
youth and adults have been touched by the Spirit of God and changed significantly
in their faith journey. Kudos to the hundreds of people who have given time,
energy, and money to enhance the ministry of Camp Christian! It was a great
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History and Supporters of Camp Christian
2002 was a life-changing year for our regional
camp in Georgia. Our camp began with the gift of the land by the McAfee
family in 1960 and has had a long and successful ministry as a summer camping
facility for our youth. Since that time, Disciples have had a vision of
an expanded ministry for our camp. In 2002 we began realizing that vision,
as construction was completed on year-round conference and retreat facilities.
The new Woodland Lodge was built.
This building sleeps 56 in air-conditioned and heated comfort. The lodge
has a huge deck with many rocking chairs and features a beautiful view of
Miracle Day volunteers transformed the
Dining Hall into a 2,200 square foot multi-purpose dining and meeting
room. With heating and air-conditioning the building is essential to serving
groups of all ages all year long.
The historic first building at the camp was
remodeled into a full-service conference center. Peachtree Conference
Center can serve 32 people with meeting and dining in front of the beautiful
fireplace and has a screened porch deck with a view of the lake. Upstairs
are the Peachtree Suites suitable for individual retreats and for VIP housing.
Many adult and youth groups have already
used our conference facilities. These groups have been blessed by the gifts
that have helped to make the construction happen. Mr. C.O. McAfee was a
dedicated business leader, philanthropist, and Disciple churchman. He gave
the initial gift of the land and supported the camp for years. His family
gave additional funds for the construction of a lodge. Woodland Christian
Church was a congregation in Macon that closed several years ago. When they
closed they gave a gift to the region that was to be used for the construction
of a new lodge. Carol Lavery served as the Associate Minister to Youth and
was one of the visionaries who dreamed of more ministries for the camp.
When she retired, her friends gave gifts in her honor to expand the camp’s
ministry. All these funds totaled approximately $191,000. Miracle Day gifts
last year for the Dining Hall came to well over $20,000. Peachtree Christian
Church deserves special mention because they gave over $26,000 which was
used for the remodeling of Peachtree. Added to this, to help us complete
our construction is a mortgage loan from Church Extension of about $471,000.
Congregations and individuals have assisted the camp with direct gifts,
but our primary source of income to help us pay our debt has been and will
be your gifts to the Sowing Seeds for Christ’s Church Capital Campaign.
We are indeed blessed by the many individuals
who worked on this project; volunteers, persons who gave financially, our
Architectural services were donated by Joe Gardner. Congregations and individuals
gave gifts for the purchase of the furniture in Woodland Lodge. Everyone
got together and made this Sanctuary in the Woods; we call Camp Christian,
more accessible and expanded our ministry. Thank you one and all.