A Wilderness Adventure For Sloan

That special week in the early summer is here: Catholic Summer Camp! On Sunday night, the kickoff event for this year’s event was held on the St. Mary campus. We attended mass, ate dinner, and learned about this year’s theme…

This year’s Catholic Summer Camp theme at St. Mary in Spokane Valley is Wilderness Adventure Through the Sacraments.

For the next several days, Sloan is on a wilderness adventure. Or, to be specific, a Wilderness Adventure Through the Sacraments. The campers are taking each day to learn about 1-2 of the seven sacraments of the Catholic Church. For example, yesterday was baptism and today is Holy Eucharist.

Sloan loves going to camp! Each camper received a t-shirt that they wear each day. All first graders received green shirts.

As they learn about the sacraments, the kids are treated to all the fun stuff you would find at your typical vacation bible school: crafts, music, skits, games, and, most importantly…snacks! So the curriculum and the child-appeal factor are both definitely present.

Marie goes all out with everything she does. This photo backdrop that Sloan is posing in front of is awesome!

But what sets this camp apart from other vacation bible schools—both Catholic and non-Catholic? The answer is Marie Bricher. She is the camp director, which encompasses part of her role as St. Mary’s director of religious education. Marie goes absolutely all out for everything she does, including Catholic summer camp. You would be amazed at the decorations, organization, attention to detail, and enthusiasm she pours into this program. Most impressive of all, however, is how she can explain the content at a level that makes sense to elementary students.

Marie Bricher addresses campers, staff, and parents at the kickoff event inside the St. Mary gym. She is phenomenal at what she does.

And that special ability that Marie possesses is crucial, especially with this year’s theme, because nothing is more important than the sacraments. Ever wonder what makes being a Catholic so unique and why more than a billion people belong to the Church? It is because of these graces given to us by God. Needless to say, the sacraments is a topic that deserves the utmost attention and care when being explained to anyone—especially children—so it is such a comfort that not only is this year’s camp based on it but that someone of Marie’s caliber is leading the discussion on it.

All the decorations and props for this camp are so cool.

Sloan is on fire for this camp. She loved attending yesterday and I was impressed by all she told me about baptism when she returned home. What makes this year’s theme resonate even more is that in Fr. Mike Schmitz’s Catechism In A Year podcast we are currently right in the middle of the sacraments. He just finished baptism and is currently on confirmation. While Sloan is learning about the sacraments on a children’s level I am learning more about them on an adult level. Although two different modes of delivery are at play, Sloan and I are able to “compare notes” and know that we are still learning the same thing. How cool is that?!

Please pray for the campers, the volunteers, and Marie as they continue to go through this week. As Pope John Paul II said, “Life with Christ is a wonderful adventure.” Don’t Blink.

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