Hello Everyone! (Assuming most readers are parents of the lovely campers so don’t worry your kids are SAFE and HAPPY)
We made Fanari camp history yesterday by visiting Saint Sava Serbian monastery in Libertyville, which is the burial site for the uncorrupted Saint Mardarije of Libertyville. Everyone was extremely respectful Father Gabriel from the monastery shared the saint’s life story with us. I knew the campers were having a special spiritual moment by the curiosity in their eyes as they looked upon the beautiful Byzantine-Style iconography that covered the walls of the church. And when they saw the black, bushy beard of Saint Mardarije, which is still full after 80 years of reposing.
Each day they get spiritual “vitamins” through priest’s sermons that focus on different aspects of the Orthodox religion. Father Kosmas related Vladdy’s support to the Red Wing’s 1997 Stanley Cup Championship to Jesus’s support in our attaining salvation. Father Sotiri gave a moving story on the topic “Your mindset controls your thoughts, attitudes, and actions.” Each of these stories gives the camp great thought provoking questions, which lead to meaningful devotionals where camp staff and campers unpack the activities and learnings for the day.
Today, along with three square meals and dozens of activities, the camp will partake in the Holy Sacrament of Confession. The camper’s questions to priests during nighttime “devotionals” showed how much thought they had put into this special day.
Tonight, we are gearing up for the annual camp “Olympics” where each cabin will become spiritual warriors and compete for the chance to be crowned Olympic Champions. Please keep your children in your prayers as they embark on this challenge!
We are having the #bestdayever (our slogan for the week).