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It was my first camporee. Not only was this my first camporee, it was my first Pathfinder event period.

Having never been a Pathfinder, I really wasn’t sure what to expect in our gathering at Camp Fife near Goose Prairie, Wash. I had this vision in my head of strict uniforms and marching (which I’m told comes at Pathfinder Fair). However, what I actually saw was groups of kids from a wide variety of backgrounds enjoying nature and learning about Christ.

Something that really stood out to me was how incredibly hospitable and friendly everyone was. I had the privilege of joining multiple clubs at meal times, and they all blew me away by their willingness to serve (pun intended).

Before everyone packed up and left Sunday, the clubs did a service project to help clean up Camp Fife. It was really cool to see the kids so willing to help out and give back to the community. I’ve come to realize Pathfinders is an incredibly versatile ministry that shows the love of Christ to thousands of kids around the world.

Rachel Wright, Upper Columbia Conference Pathfinder coordinator, had the opportunity to interview some of the kids and staff about the weekend at Camp Fife. Here are some of the things she learned.   

Spokane (Wash.) Trailblazers said the meeting place had nice seating and was a great place where everyone could enjoy the program comfortably, without the distractions of the cold or rain.

Many of the clubs enjoyed the multiple trails around Camp Fife, which provided Pathfinders and their staff with breathtaking views and adventurous stories to take back home with them. Yakima (Wash.) Braves appreciated having staff from Camp MiVoden in Hayden, Idaho, come to Camp Fife to lead music and other activities.

When asked about the benefits having camp staff involved in Pathfinders, Jeff Wines, Upper Columbia Conference youth, young adult and family ministry director, replied, “I think there are many factors. Having young adults being in leadership and learning leadership at camporee helps them learn and be examples to the Pathfinders.”

Our guest speaker, Craig Harris, was a huge hit with the Pathfinders. A staff member from College Place (Wash.) Torchbearers said that having Harris show the kids how easy it was to learn a Bible verse and memorize it was something they can take away and use in their everyday lives.

When Harris made an appeal Saturday evening, the Holy Spirit moved 117 young people to make decisions for baptism. That must be evidence that the reckless love of God is still magnetic.

Zack Mitchell is the Upper Columbia Conference youth and family life taskforce worker, and Rachel Wright is a new Upper Columbia Conference Pathfinder coordinator.

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Camporee is a great place to see friends!

Weekend theme: Reckless Love

Smiles and laughter marked the weekend.

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