On Sunday afternoon, July 31, 43 campers from the Piedmont joined together at The Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Educational Center for our much-anticipated 17th year of Camp Jubilee, an overnight camp hosted by Mount Jubilee Ministries for teens and adults requiring mild to moderate levels of support. Welcoming these special campers were over 60 volunteer counselors and staff! As in years past, the opening of camp was greeted with enthusiasm and excitement by everyone. After a refreshing Kona Ice drink, a time of settling in, getting reacquainted with old friends, dinner and an opening night Bible story, the good times got off to a joyous start with our Sunday evening dance.
Retiring to our cabins at the end of an exciting first day, camper dreams were filled with thoughts of the week that lay ahead: horseback riding, archery, canoeing, crafts and swimming. Sleeping bags were unrolled, gear was stowed away and lights went out at 9:30 with the promise of a full day of fun and adventure just a few hours of shut-eye away.
Each morning (and evening), Peter, Emily, Forest, Joy and Sarah Dodge led our praise and worship. With every session, the stage was filled with campers volunteering their heartfelt worship. Following the praise and worship, seasoned Bible teachers, Andy and Loretta Burgess taught many Biblical principles centering around the story of the ten commandments, culminating in Israel’s deliverance from Egypt with many of our campers serving as standard bearers (and carriers of Joseph’s bones!) leading up to the dramatic crossing of the Red Sea.
Special evening activities throughout the week kicked off on Monday with the Jubilee Jamboree – a time of entertainment provided by our talented staff. On Tuesday, the annual talent show was held. Virtually every one of our campers hit the stage showcasing their superb talents. There was singing, dancing, storytelling, math, trivia, displays of art, and other expressions of the creativity of our friends. The BJP auditorium was filled as many visitors stopped by to celebrate with our campers. Around Wednesday’s campfire, campers and counselors alike, shared testimonies of what Camp Jubilee meant to them. The theme for all was one of love and the discovery of new friends. Campers and counselors shared the impact the week had on their lives and much thanks was given to our Lord for making the events of the week such a success. As always, a special s’more treat provided just the right sweetness to the evening!
During Closing Ceremonies, a new tradition (begun last year) was continued: honoring one of our counselors with the “Jabe Wilhoit Counselor Award”. Jabe, a former volunteer with Camp Jubilee who epitomized the counselor ideal of selfless service done with joy, was called home by his Lord in December of 2020. We at Camp Jubilee thought it appropriate to honor that selfless spirit that he embodied. This year’s recipient, Corey Gambill, was recognized by the senior staff for continuing the pursuit of these ideals. In truth, though, many Jabe Wilhoit Counselor Awards could have been handed out as Camp Jubilee was, once again, staffed by the kind of individuals that make for a joyous experience for each of our campers. A big thank you to all!
As final hugs and well-wishes were given, a last photo taken, it is our hope that everyone involved with Camp Jubilee took home the memories of experiencing first-hand the moving of God’s Spirit in the hearts of all that make the camp “a special place for special people.”
For more photos from our incredible week, please check out the Gallery page!