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Fellowship Deaconry Blog

Sharing Updates and Stories from Fellowship Deaconry Ministries

Thank you, Allen Smith

On behalf of the board and staff of Fellowship Deaconry, I would like to express our appreciation to Allen Smith for his leadership efforts during the past three years. He has worked to grow programs and resources and sustain the facilities that are the heart of our ministry. Through his efforts Day Camp Sunshine has grown and improvements have been made to benefit this important FDM program and outreach. He also oversaw renovations to the Sister’s living space, which integrated special cooking and dining areas to improve the efficiency and quality of their living. Allen brought many organizational enhancements as well, with updates to our website, governance, and accreditation with the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA). Well done, good and faithful servant!

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Sunshine Preschool Update

This has been a great year at Sunshine Preschool & Infant Care. It is hard to believe that it is already April and school will be over soon!  One of my favorite times each week is getting to teach the Bible story to our preschoolers every Monday. I love going into the classrooms and sharing with them that Jesus loves them. It was fun to have them learn about Jesus’ birth before Christmas and help them understand what the real meaning of Christmas is. We have currently been learning all about Jesus’ life, and for the past few weeks have been learning why Easter is so much more than bunnies and eggs. One of my favorite stories from this past year is hearing about how one of our Stories 3 year olds loves to go home and sing about having the Joy of Jesus down in her heart.

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Day Camp Sunshine: Stories of Impact

2014 was a very special summer and in our end of season parent survey, the families told us exactly how it had impacted not only their child’s life, but their lives as well.

“Where do I start? This was the BEST camp experience we ever had! My son changed so much during and after camp it was amazing. He was more focused, willing to try new things...I can go on and on! He made new friends, loved his counselors and he can’t wait to come back next year. I was just as sad as he was when it ended.”

“I am personally so very THANKFUL to have DCS in my “backyard”! What an incredible experience for my kids to attend a Christian Camp that is loving and serving God, the kids, and the community of parents and beyond. Please keep doing what you are doing!!”

“My son was absolutely thrilled with the camp. He loved his counselors, the bible study, and all the activities. He would tell me about the bible lessons each day, different things about his counselors and all the fun. His self-esteem and confidence really grew as well as his behavior. My daughter also flourished under your camp. The kindness, friendship and showing respect for others are life lessons and experiences that will last a lifetime.”

“My children absolutely adored DCS this past summer!! In fact, just two days ago my daughter was retelling the story of Jonah and the Whale to her brother, in 3rd grade CCD, who didn’t remember it! I loved hearing about their Bible study every afternoon. They loved it and we can’t wait to come back next summer!! Thank you for providing such a true day camp in our area!”

“I cannot even express how grateful we are to have found such a great camp so close to home! DCS met and greatly exceeded our expectations and is worth every penny we paid. We were praying for a great place to send our Girls for the summer and our prayers were answered. Thank you!”

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Director's Corner

I have to confess that the end of summer for me is somewhat painful. In previous Seasons I’ve shared my childhood experiences and the impact that Camp Sunshine had on my life. Reflecting back on our summer camp season I can’t believe it just seemed to zip by too quickly. I’m sitting here thinking back on my childhood and remembering how sad I was when camp ended. I wanted it to continue year round. The power that camp can have on a child’s life can be incredible. For me it was life changing.

In order to run a successful camp, it’s a year round job. In our case preparation for the 2015 season began immediately after camp closed. Back in my day as a camper/counselor camp opened usually the last week of June and closed the Saturday before Labor Day. There was no pre-camp planning. We used the same program year after year and everyone loved it. Those days are long gone. We have a small camp staff team that works feverishly to deliver an incredible summer camp experience.

This year was an extraordinary camp season. Camp attendance was up, we increased the camp season by two weeks, the staff was the strongest we’ve seen in years, the annual drama play was a huge success, the family BBQ’s were amazing and best of all kids came to know the Lord.

I really want to thank the year round and summer staffs for their countless hours of hard work and dedication that made this season such a blessing.

The fall season is quickly upon us. Leaves have already begun to turn colors and drop. We’re preparing the facility for the winter season and I’m looking forward to a number of special winter projects we’ve got lined up.

This has been an exciting year for the entire organization. God has truly blessed us on many levels. Thank you for your prayers and financial support. Remember, if you’re in the area, stop by - I’d love to share a cup of coffee with you. Have a blessed and joyful holiday season.

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