by Jay Wintermeyer
HAYDEN, Idaho - Former staff, directors and caretakers of Camp MiVoden converged on Hayden Lake September 10-12, 2010 to celebrate 70 years of summer camp ministry. Throughout the weekend, Maple Auditorium was filled with people reconnecting and reliving memories from years of camp service.
Friday night was dedicated to recounting stories of MiVoden’s past history, a history replete with faith-building experiences. Some of the most recent stories centered around how God opened doors to allow for MiVoden to begin much needed camp upgrades.
On Sabbath morning during Sabbath School, camp staff arranged a special video conference with former staff who couldn’t attend. For church, Pastor Karl Haffner encouraged each person to look to God and how He’s led in the past and how He will lead in the future.
The weekend included time for sharing memories as well as looking forward. Sabbath afternoon, camp staff led tours around the camp. They highlighted the work on the new ballfield and the first new cabin construction site, part of the new upgrade plan.
Bob Folkenberg, Jr., Upper Columbia Conference president, who attended the celebration on Sabbath, says, “Camp MiVoden is a place where young people can come to know Jesus Christ.” Folkenberg continues, “For seventy years, as a conference, we’ve focused a lot of resources on this camp; not because of programming, but because of people. Over ten thousand lives have been touched through the years. MiVoden is important because it’s a place where young people make friends with Christ.”
For 70 years, Camp MiVoden has been introducing kids to Jesus. The camp began with the purchase of land in 1940 and has grown over the years as land and buildings have been added.
Camp director, pastor Richard Parker, reflected on the anniversary celebration. “When you see all these people gathering together it reminds you of all the lives that have been touched for heaven,” says Parker. “We’re seeing the fruit of what’s happened over the last seventy years. It gives me real courage and inspires me to know that we have something very special here. God has changed lives here in the past and will continuing doing it in the future.”