Camp and Retreat E-News: Offering Sacred Spaces of Acceptance

June 05, 2019


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Reflections on values with Camp & Retreat Ministries

Offering Sacred Spaces of Acceptance

 Value 4: Acceptance

By Peggy Lovegren, Director at Wallowa Lake Camp

United Methodist Camp and Retreat Centers are a sacred place of acceptance!
Who do we serve:  ALL
What do we provide: a safe place for all to receive gracious hospitality
Where do we show acceptance: in our lives and in our camp and retreat ministry.
When: all of the time and in all places.
Why: Because God has called us to love and serve all! So often, and in so many places, people feel unaccepted, including in some places of worship. That is why our camp and retreat centers take “acceptance” so seriously. We want to provide safe places of hospitality where all people can feel loved just as they are, free to be themselves and share their unique gifts and personalities; Free to hear the message of God’s love!
How do we put this value of acceptance into practice at Wallowa Lake Camp?
*At our recent board / directors / staff meeting we brainstormed with others, new ways to be welcoming to all and to reach out to underserved populations, especially those who may feel “unaccepted.”  We will continue to seek new ways to be accepting.
*We welcome all ages (despite what some may expect, camp is not just for children and youth!) Wallowa Lake United Methodist Camp was designed with adults and families in mind, providing everything from deluxe round cabins equipped with private bathrooms, log beds, handmade quilts, carpet, skylights, microwaves, and mini fridges, to rustic rooms with bunk beds!
*By providing financial assistance for youth who need it to come to camp.
*By building facilities to keep people safe and to accommodate their needs.
*By flying the Nimiipuu tribal flag next to the American flag and working alongside the tribe to make the camp a welcoming place for their culture camps.
*By hosting people from a variety of groups, religions, denominations, and cultures, asking what we can do to make their retreat the best ever!
*By serving a variety of foods and meeting the dietary needs of our guests.
*By not judging.
*By talking about “acceptance” in our Christian programming.
These are just a few of the ways we hope to shower our guests with acceptance. We hope you will come to a United Methodist Camp or Retreat Center, where you will be welcomed and accepted!
Open Doors, Open Hearts and Open Minds!

- Peggy Lovegren

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and The Episcopal Diocese of Oregon