Side by Side Camp Slideshow
Dear Trinity Church,
I am so glad to bring you tidings from Side by Side Camp. Over the past seven weeks the third floor has been full of joy and struggle. At 7:35 am each morning cars pull up, temperatures are taken and children with masks tumble out with their 20 pound backpacks, mostly happy for another day of camp. As they enter the church I call out, "Miss Cathy will be helping you today! Or "Mr. James will be helping you today." Our 10 Classroom Helpers and seven children are becoming a community (dare I say family?) facing the challenges of online learning and following Covid-19 protocols.
Pastor Matt described our church as turning "inside out" when we moved worship OUT to backyards and invited CVCH children IN to our Sunday School classrooms to attend online classes. The sweet surprise has been how the CVCH children are bringing the Lord into our church! "Field trips" into the sanctuary inspire the children's natural sense of wonder at the beauty of this old and special place. Their careful observations become natural conversations about Jesus. Questions like "Why is Jesus so special?" and "Was Mary the first woman?" and "Why did Jesus have to die on the cross when He was innocent?" invite us to share the whole story of God.
We practice kindness, apologies, respect and honesty. The children wrestle with their frustration and fatigue with online learning. We become familiar with the teachers's faces and voices and ask, "Lord, help them persevere!" Volunteers pray for grace and stamina as the weeks wear on. One child asks, "Miss Julia, are you sad today?" I reply, "Yes, I think I am a little sad today." Another shares, "I am afraid because my dad is leaving town for three nights." I offer to pray, asking for the peace of Christ for the family. One child gave me a plaque saying, "Don't worry about tomorrow, God is already there." I need that reminder every day.
I love how the Lord uses each volunteer in the children's lives. Pastor Carson convinced the fourth grade boys to sing a special birthday song to our fifth grade girl. Joyce and Susan teach the kids old fashioned jump rope. Ingrid plays games brought from home. Pastor Matt plays soccer and tells stories. Elise and McKenna take the kids to Methow Park. Others share their teaching experience and gifts. I even taught a little hand sewing:).
We are facing a colder darker season. Please pray for SBS camp! Our days are numbered as schools plan to resume in person in November. Pray that we will continue to wonder about Jesus and to share His love and grace.
I am moved by how Covid 19 and Side by Side camp is changing me. God is bigger and more mysterious than ever. I love my calling to teach Godly Play to our dear Trinity kids. But I am so thankful for the witness of God's power and blessing when we open our doors to neighbors beyond our church family. I wonder how the Lord might continue to use Trinity to care for our parish after SBS camp is over?
In Christ’s mercy,