2020 Camp Nazareth Wish List
Our Diocesan Sobor took place in October 2019 in Johnstown and an article about it has come and gone in The Church Messenger. Our Diocese has moved onto other things. Our parishes have celebrated Christmas and Theophany. However, we wanted to share with you at least one part of the Diocesan Sobor that continues to have an impact at Camp Nazareth.
Before the Diocesan Sobor, the Camp decided to put together a Wish List for 2020; simply a list of needed items with a price tag on each.
Click Here to download wish list with price tags and the faithful, parishes and ministries that sponsored them.
The concept of the Wish List is not new. Many different organizations publish an annual Wish List asking their constituency to sponsor one or more of the items. The Camp however, has not offered a Wish List, at least not in recent memory, in part because the Diocese and its faithful have always given generously to the Camp and supported the ministry that takes place there. This has been the case since the Camp was founded in 1977. Nevertheless, it was decided to put together a list of 20 Wish List items for 2020 and place a few photocopies of that list on the Camp Nazareth tables at the Diocesan Sobor. The Wish List was simply one of many things at the Camp Nazareth tables. Most of the items were from the Camp’s Gift Shop.
Truth be told, we weren’t really anticipating much of a response, not because a Wish List is somehow a bad idea, but again, the Diocesan faithful already support the Camp in a way that reflects a strong commitment to its ministry. And there were over $17,500 worth of items on the list, not to mention Wish List item #16 – a new Camp Truck. But the photocopies were put out just the same without any advertising; just a stack of papers on the table.
At first all the photocopies simply disappeared. People just took them. Then others were asking the Camp to make more copies. AND THEN, as happens when you bring a group of committed people together IN FAITH, God is allowed to work through their hearts. What happened then was simply overwhelming. It came in the form of a challenge.
One particular Sobor delegate offered this challenge to the Camp: If the Camp received commitments to purchase the other 19 items on the Wish List while we were still at the Sobor, then they would pay for the 16th item on the list. First, we were talking about 19 items worth over $17,500 on the list. Second, the 16th item on the list was a new Camp Truck!!
An announcement was made at the Sobor that the Camp had received this challenge, this generous offer, and from that moment until the following day, the Wish List items began to be checked off the list. Parishes, parishioners, and a variety of parish ministries all combined to meet the challenge. Every item on the Wish List was sponsored before the end of the Sobor. Some of the money was given at the Sobor. 90% of the commitments have been honored at the time of the writing of this article with the other 10% “on the way”.
And, on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 the Camp received delivery of a beautiful 2018 Chevy Silverado 1500 as the culmination of the effort to sponsor the entire 2020 Camp Wish List. You can see the pictures of the truck in this article. It’s a NICE truck; one that will meet the needs of the Camp for years to come. The new truck was donated by The Renaissance Fund, NFP, to whom the Camp is very grateful not just for the truck but for the challenge to give. Essentially the Renaissance Fund offered a more than 2-to-1 matching grant challenge to those at the Sobor. Meaning, for every dollar given by others, the Fund would contribute two dollars toward the goal.
Just a word in conclusion…The Camp is grateful to those who support it and its ministry. It is especially grateful for the response to its Wish List at the Diocesan Sobor. We were not anticipating having ALL the items on the list sponsored by the conclusion of the Sobor, but giving inspires giving, and a challenge to give was offered and was met with an incredible response. We are grateful to God because He does inspire us to give and He inspired the hearts of many to help us sponsor all the items on the 2020 Wish List. We are tempted to say that because of the overwhelming response, an ANNUAL Camp Wish List is called for. Certainly, everyone likes to see their donation “go” toward some THING and so a Wish List gives all of us something concrete to sponsor and see. But an ANNUAL Wish List? For that, as always, we would rely on the kindness, support and generosity of our Diocesan faithful and their parishes and parish ministries who have, without Wish Lists, generously supported the Camp since it began in 1977, and really even before then. Thank you to all those who have supported the Camp over the years! Thank you, again, to all those who sponsored the items on its 2020 Wish List! And thank you, again, to the Renaissance Fund, NFP, for challenging us to give and for donating the new Camp truck!