Some random work and life happenings from the last couple of weeks:

  • We had to sit out the first two co-labor weekends while we waited to be healthy and not spread anything to people we would work with. But then the third work weekend we were able to jump in and help out with the work. Jim raked with a crew of helpers from one of our supporting churches, and I cleaned Boys’ Dorm with a couple of able helpers. I even successfully recruited Mary Emma and Lydia to come help with my crew, which made a big difference in the speed that we moved through the work. 
  • Jim jumped back in to the work waiting for him in the office once he could go back. One thing pressing to be finished was the Covid guidelines document to be sent out to parents of campers. It has been a large time-consuming task of team leaders to wade through the current state guidelines and form Barakel’s summer policies accordingly. Of course, they no sooner get that done and decisions made, and everything changes! But such is the world we live in right now. We are most of all just thankful to be preparing to run summer camp this year even if that currently comes with additional planning.
  • Mary Emma got her driver’s license! It has been a long time coming, but she finally finished all the learning, practicing, and testing. It has been a new but very nice thing to have another licensed diver in the house!
  • We made a trip down state to help move things out at Hillsdale as Grace was finishing her junior year there. We loaded up our truck and brought it all home; she finished up the following week, stayed to watch friends graduate, and then headed home. In the week since she arrived at home there has been a steady stream of unpacking and sifting through the pile of “campus life” loot. She is home for a couple more weeks and then she will be a part of summer staff.
  • Jim and I celebrated our 24th anniversary this month. We were able to go for one night just the two of us to stay in Petosky at a nice place right on the water. Neither of us had ever stayed in Petosky so it was fun to see that area. It left us wanting to get back there sometime again. It wasn’t warm at the beginning of May, but it was sunny and beautiful just the same. 
  • This past weekend we hosted the College and Career Retreat. It was a fairly small number of campers, but a joyful group to have visit. Some new to camp, some previous summer staff, some previous campers, some who will be here this year for summer staff. It was great to host guests again and this group in particular makes us look forward to summer!

Some things coming in the next couple of weeks:

  • This coming weekend we are running a Mother/Daughter Retreat on West Side and a Men’s Retreat on East Side. We will be plugged in to the work schedule for those, including Grace and I in chapel for the Mothers and Daughters. She is playing piano and I will play flute and help lead some singing.
  • The following weekend will be Memorial Day Family Camp. We look forward to an “all hands on deck” kind of weekend around here. 
  • The day after Memorial Day is the start of summer staff workshop, when we all begin preparing and training for the summer season. It is coming soon!

PLEASE PRAY: We are very low on numbers for staff this summer. There are needs pretty much across the board. There is a large need still for college aged people to serve as counselors and to work in program areas. With the numbers as they are we simply can’t run summer camp the way we would like to or are used to. In addition to those roles, there are also openings for medical staff, kitchen workers, and bus or semi drivers. Please join us in praying God would raise up workers to help in this ministry this summer. We trust His provision and know that the summer and our work here belong to Him.