Camp Impact: Mrs. Katie Schuermann
Growing up, I attended a public school situated in the middle of a cornfield. My high school graduating class was a whopping, record-breaking 52 students-big, and most of those students were boys and girls with whom I had shared classrooms, locker rooms, and buses for twelve years straight.
There is much good that comes from rubbing elbows with the exact same people for so many years in a row — not the least of which is ample practice at forgiving and being forgiven — but the corporate affection of a tight-knit community quickly grows hostile toward any individual whose will is opposed to the mob. Put plainly, a Christian girl intent on living a “chaste and decent life” is seen as a downer, if not an outright threat, to the party life of youths indulging in drunkenness and sexual promiscuity.
And so, Camp CILCA became a welcome respite for this Christian girl. It was a place that encouraged and celebrated chaste and decent living by structuring attendees’ schedules around the hearing, singing, and studying of the Word of God as well as daily, hourly physical activity that pointed toward, not the satisfaction of self but the service of others. Camp CILCA also expanded my social connections beyond my immediate community, taking some of the pressure off the often-isolating interactions with my peers at home. I now had friends across the state and beyond. What was a little shunning from my hometown classmates?
Camp CILCA was formative for me, helping me to see beyond the immediate and to delay gratification, yearning and striving for what is best in life, namely a life centered on the forgiveness, life, and salvation of Jesus Christ and His promise to make all things new on the Last Day.