Disciple Men of Georgia -- 2003 Fall Rally

I would like to write:  "From the Highlands to the Islands", or "Down the Chattahoochee toward the Gulf", or "from Camp Kicklighter at Shelman Bluff to the Alabama State line".  However, the attendees did not come from all these areas.  Yet, with the fifteen (15) attending from various Christian Churches in "Georgia", the   workers arrived at the "HOG" {the Heart Of Georgia}, and within that area, gathered at Camp Christian for fellowship on Friday evening, September 26, work, WORK, on Saturday morning and departed on Saturday in mid-afternoon, September 27.

Attendees were:  Charlie Butler, First Christian Church, Macon; Ray Dotson, Sandersville Christian Church, Jim Cook and his son Tyler Cook from First Christian Church, Griffin; John Anderson, August Central Christian Church; Archie Jenkins, Guyton Christian Church; Sydney Day, Charles Maddox, Gary Wall, Johnny Donald, Jim Brooks, Stan Witherington, Bryan Green, and Del Von Almen [the "Reporter"]; and Michael Weeks [Camp Director and member of Sandersville Christian Church].

Camp Michael had hoped for twice the number in attendance but was not stumped for task assignments.  We walked through the weeds, woods, weeds, roots, stumps; past the flaking paint on Lavery Hall then back to the dining room for the evening meal.

After a fine evening meal we went to the restored Peachtree Lodge near the large Fire Place. A report on what is happening in a very positive way at Camp Christian was given with  Michael as the narrator of the achievements; of the dreams for the years ahead.  After the reflections on what awaits us, we were told what our tasks would be   while there.  It was a WORK SESSION as we Disciple Men met for our Fall Rally!

Then Rev. Jim Brooks had a devotional period and we shared fellowship with each other.  We renewed old friendships as Disciple Men of Georgia. We met new members of the fellowship for the first time, and men who for the first time and come to behold the beauty and wonder of Camp Christian.  {Example: Del Von Almen was asked by Jim Cook about Sara and John, two Von Almen children who had attended Chi Rho Camp and Youth Conferences at Camp Christian when Jim Cook was young enough to be a part of that same group.  These three had become adults who had given time to served, as Adults, at Camp Christian as counselors, summer interns, and Life Guard.} Jim Cook reflected that they, who had been children there, were now adults who had lead children to new understandings of "time apart" to behold the beauty and closeness of God.

Then Tyler Cook [age 8] told me that next year he "will be in Junior Camp #1"  It will be his first time.  He advised me that if they only had one Junior Camp it would be too crowded to enjoy the camping experience.  Therefore, he advised me, "they are having Junior Camp #1 and Junior Camp #2 and Im attending Junior Camp #1!".

What a good beginning for a Fall Rally!.  It was time for bed and we went into Woodland Lodge and selected the place where we would be bedding down for the night.  What a lovely setting the ten rooms are! It is not possible to sleep in all of the rooms in one night.

The "Reporter" was up at six a.m. and walked the deck the men of Fall Rally 2002 had put together.  Then he sat in one of the tall backed rocking chair, looked out across the lake to the "Cross" on the opposite shore--reflected in the waters of the lake--it was calm, quiet, and a new day was dawning.  It was the only day at hand and it was ours to use to the Glory of God!

Woods
The woods cleared by the Men

The Bell for Breakfast (at eight a.m.) was rung by Tyler Cook.  {He rang the bell again at twelve noon for the lunch break.}  Between breakfast and lunch, and after lunch there was that magic which comes from Camp Christian when people are together in plan and purpose.  We pulled the weeds.  We dug up the limbs which were on the ground surface.  We piled brush into high mountains and a new staff member who, is the grounds keeper, lighted the mountains of brush both morning and afternoon in a controlled burn.  While this was happening, others were working on ladders and by standing on the ground PAINTING.

Believe it or not: When we work for a grand purpose, when we sweat, and pull with all our might, when we help one another in the tasks assigned, the day is never long enough.  Water breaks were allowed and it was back to the task which poured forth more sweat!  It is good for men to be working together, caring for each other.

Del Von Almen, reporting.

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