Editors Note: Over the next couple of months, Bernadette – one of our amazing Servant Leadership Missionaries – will be blogging about her experience serving at Camp Gray. Read Part 1 & Part 2. Enjoy!
By: Bernadette Diodati
Everyone is attracted to the joyous atmosphere at Camp Gray, but what keeps people coming back summer after summer, year after year, is the encounter they have with Jesus while they are here. It is powerful to witness and a testament to the mission of Camp, which invites people of all ages to encounter Jesus Christ in creation, experience a fun and vibrant Catholic community, and be challenged to ever more deeply know, love, and serve God and neighbor. As missionaries, we pray each day that His Will be done through this mission. We wish to be an example of Christ to every person we are blessed to meet. There is nothing more rewarding than to be able to show them their worth as sons and daughters of our Heavenly King.
However, in order to give of ourselves fully, we must be filled spiritually as well, and we are fortunate to have the resources to do so! The chapel is only five minutes walking distance from where we live on Camp, three if we are feeling energetic enough to hasten our steps! Our team always reminds each other that there is no excuse for not going and spending time with our Lord because He is so close. My Mom told me when I was younger that if I could live or work in a place near a chapel, then I should cherish it greatly, because it is a rare opportunity. I certainly do not take it for granted now, and visiting with Jesus after a busy retreat is exactly what I need to replenish myself for the next day. I must admit that on days where I am physically and emotionally drained it is easy to want to withdraw and go back to my room instead, but I have never once regretted choosing to spend that time with God.
In addition, spiritual direction is offered through the priests around the Diocese, and I cannot speak highly enough about them. They inspire me to be a better Catholic, and being able to have this formation and guidance at this time in my life is exceedingly beneficial. Throughout the year we have also contributed to one another’s spiritual growth by participating in community prayer and discussion. Currently in this Lenten period, our team is reading Rediscovering Jesus by Matthew Kelly, and it has been neat to see everyone’s individual insights on each chapter.
My faith is at the core of who I am. Without His daily graces and constant support, I would not be able to serve God through the gift that is Camp Gray.
The Camp Gray Servant Leadership Team serves more than 3,000 young people during the school year by facilitating many, many, many retreats! Are you interested in learning more about Camp’s Servant Leadership Team? Let us know!