Jesus is the source of hope and joy today and always! We look to Him for wisdom, comfort and direction and trust him in the journey ahead. Christmas reminds us that Jesus stepped down from heaven into a messy world with sickness, discouragement, fear and sin. Jesus came to walk among us, teaching us how to live and giving us hope and joy. It is no wonder that the angels sang “Glory to God” (Luke 2:14) at His arrival.
We continue to give glory to God, even in one of the most difficult and trying seasons of Pioneer’s 90-year history. As you know, because of COVID-19, camp was empty this summer – no campers, no summer staff, no volunteers. Yet, even in this heart-breaking season, we have continued to trust that Jesus walks among us, bringing us comfort, joy and hope. We hope this is also true for you in these difficult days.
This fall we have been able to offer some weekend events and welcome small groups of people to camp. Those who have come are so grateful to connect with others and enjoy the outdoors.
John, who attended a father/son retreat with his son, shared this:
I was impressed by how well things were managed, respecting all the public health and legal requirements. In fact, maybe because there are so few opportunities to connect with my boys in a ‘normal’ way right now, it was even a bigger blessing to us than usual. Thank you for finding ways to safely keep some critical ministries going.
Another retreat participant, Marlene reflected, “Pioneer Camp refreshes me like no other place on earth.”
Thousands of campers, staff and alumni say the same thing about Pioneer. Perhaps you have said it, too. Please join with us as we pray for the ability to offer retreats and gatherings this winter and, even more importantly, to offer summer camp in 2021. None of us can predict what this next year will bring, but we want to be ready when we are given permission to run camp once again.
There has never been a time when we have relied so heavily on the generosity of our community to carry us through, but that season is here. If you are able, would you make a year-end donation to help Pioneer through this difficult time?
Without our usual summer camp and retreat revenue, we do not have enough funds to cover winter expenses, utilities, maintenance costs and salaries. We have been grateful for the government wage subsidy and ongoing donor support. However, we need more help as we head into 2021.
We are reassured when we hear stories of how God has used Pioneer Camp to bless and strengthen people, even in the limited ways we have been able to serve this year. We are committed to offering strong programs through retreats and summer camp in 2021. We need your financial help, your prayers and your encouragement now more than ever. Thank you for your love and support for Pioneer over so many years.
With hope and joy,
Dan Martin, On behalf of the Pioneer Camp Staff Team