Thursday, January 26, 2017

Why Support Camp Maccabee?

Camp Maccabee is a catholic camp in association with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri.  It was founded in 2009.  All funding comes from donations made by donors.

 I was asked a few days ago why should a person either send their son to Camp Maccabee or support it.  That is a fair question.  To tell you why either is worthy of your time, energy, and money requires saying what is the purpose of the camp.

The camp, designed in mind for young high school men, operates under a centralized belief: No man should live in fear.  No man should allow fear to restrict who he is as an adopted Son of God.  Hence, our camp is meant to be challenging.

By a man should not live in fear we mean:

1) No man should live in fear of living as a Catholic of Faith.  This is first and foremost.  We believe no catholic man should be squeamish about faith, expressions of that faith, and a foundational  relationship with God and His Church.  If a man lives in fear of this it will effect every other aspect of that man.  This camp is saturated with our Catholic faith.  Daily Mass, Divine Office (morning prayer, evening prayer, night prayer), times for Confession, Eucharistic Adoration, Stations of the Cross, and Rosary are part of the days schedule.  This isn't so as to encourage mere hoop jumping, but to get them to understand that prayer is central, the sacraments are central, and their identity as God's sons is central.  We want to teach them that without this component, they will either fail or not reach greatness.

Your donations help us give each camper a Catholic Men's Devotional Bible, rosary, prayer cards, and other sacramentals all in a backpack.  Those donations also to the buying of the book we use for each camp, a book that focuses on virtue.

2) No man should allow fear to keep him from challenging himself in every manner.  We focus on virtue.  We focus on the theological and cardinal virtues and their application to their daily life.  We do not settle, though, for just an academic exercise, but to push them physically as well.  Lethargy has fear as a natural fruit.  We don't want these young men to see obstacles as unscalable walls, but as opportunities to stretch themselves.  We give no quarter to whining.  Many of our activities are designed to get them to push themselves and in many ways to find out success becomes them.

Your donations help us pay for and expand these activities.  During the course of the week the will do a warrior dash (with the principles of Navy seal Training in mind), a low ropes course, a float trip, hiking, fly fishing, among other activities  designed to get them going.  Your donations also go to fueling these young men with food and drink.  An army marches on their stomach it is said.  Being teenage men, they eat like locusts.

3) No man should be without his brothers.  Both is prayer and activities, we seek to form a bond of common fellowship with our brothers in Christ.  Fear can be increased when a person feels isolated.  The purpose of using the philosophy of Navy Seal training is that in this training they are not that it is the team that is important, success is found not merely in individual achievement but in winning as a team.  We try to each these young men that as they need the grace of God to overcome fear, they also need to seek support and give support to their brothers.  We want them to see each other as fellow warriors of Christ...not as the enemy or competition.  We want them to learn to serve and have each others backs.

The motto of Camp Maccabee is, "praesis ut prosis ne ut imperes."   This is Latin for, "Lead in order to serve, not to rule."  These young men will grow to be leaders we hope.  They will be husbands and dads.  They will be priests and parish leaders.  We want them to be strong in their Catholicism and faith.  They will be greater and stronger leaders if they stick close to God and each other.  With so much in this world that would still them and even emasculate them, Camp Maccabee is designed to tell these young men what God and His Church expects and needs.

In addition to the above, your donations go to giving a modest stipend to our college volunteers, the renting of vans to take our campers and staff to the various sites, insurance (you do what we do and you're going to need insurance), gas, and other equipment we need to pull this off from year to year.

We want to help create the Catholic leaders of tomorrow now.  We ask you to help us and be partners in this endeavor.  We ask you to consider sending your sons.  We take campers from those who can get them to our camp.  We are based in St. Robert, Missouri, which is pretty central in the state of Missouri.  We have taken campers from the dioceses of Jefferson City, St. Louis, and Oklahoma City. Certainly we could also take campers from the dioceses of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, Little Rock, and beyond.

Currently we are running a fundraiser through teechip:  We will probably run another soon.  This fundraiser has the theme of this year's session (Be a man, Be selfless, be a hero) on it.  The next one will have the above logo.  We ask you to consider helping us.  You can also help us by going to our website and donating there.  We are in this for the long haul.  Be partners in this noble endeavor!