So my attendance to General Assembly has really just been this last one and the one in Orlando. In light of that I can’t really draw many comparisons between the various events; however, I can say that I participated in a lot more events this time around, and thoroughly enjoy it. Attending various banquets and hearing about the activities and achievements within the various branches of our denomination was nice, but it was more satisfying to here discussion of future plans in those places instead of simply resting on laurels. Plus there were all those cool after worship sessions. I also had a chance see my fellow peace interns again, and to sleep, which was icing on the metaphorical cake. I could rehash all of the discussion on the amazing speakers, resolutions passed, and elected members to get into the details of the assembly. I won’t do that though. Looking back on the event I can really understand why people call it a family reunion as I met so many people that I knew, and even encountered new people I had heard of or from – Hi pen pals.

Shifting topics slightly I had the opportunity to ride to Iowa with some of the youth that would be at the same camp as I was, which was great. My second favorite part was that I arrived a couple days early so I was able to learn more about the camp, help out when able, and get even more sleep. At this stage in the summer I was certain that I knew the ropes of how to handle the roles given to me by camps. Little did I know that I would be provided with my greatest challenge yet… free time. Instead of being attached to a small group or activity/creation group I was allowed to float at will and interact as I pleased. Previously I was always acting as an authority figure in some group setting, but there I was able to be a bystander. Able to do actually mean that I will do. I learned that I can get stir-crazy just by thinking about being idle for a week (where was this during college) so I ended up rotating small groups and interests groups. I later found out they had something like that in mind anyways, but were being considerate in case I was tired so that worked out. Moral of the story: I’m still tired.

I’ve known for a while, but I think it was at this camp that it really sunk in that what makes camp special is not the traditions, curriculum, location, or any of those components. The most crucial part is the people and the shared bonds that manifest. Whenever I leave a camp I’ve taken pictures of it after camp has ended, to supplement the official group photo, and I have posted a few of those. I think that generally we are too attached to locations and the associations we create through them; thereby, distracting ourselves from what may be more important to us. I feel like when I write this blog I get very self-reflective, but I am unable to fully convey what I think about. Hopefully this clicks with someone who has a better way with words.

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