Joy Fellowship
Fall 2005 Newsletter

 


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A Letter to Joy: Things I Learned
While Camping With Joy Fellowship

by Priscilla Yong


I returned from camping at Sechelt surprisingly refreshed! I thought of you and thought I’d capture a glimpse of my first camping experience with Joy Fellowship for you, in a list:

Things I learnt at tent-camping with Joy Fellowship, at Porpoise Bay, Sechelt

I learnt that:

bulletMerrill is the person you want to sit with when there are mosquitoes. She must have the sweetest blood around! They found a really sweet spot on her neck one evening and they descended upon her!
bulletDragonflies in the air are a sign that it is a really warm day. We had really beautiful weather for our Sports event. I learnt later that there were people praying for the event and for the weather.
bulletDave Devitt is quite a scout when it comes to games and hikes!
bulletGetting a prize makes everyone’s day, and not just the folks, as it made me smile too to get a prize! It was lovely how Sue and Dave prepared prizes for every camper and to see the thrill on everybody’s face at receiving a prize.
bulletJohn’s mum is never far from John’s heart, that she is really John’s “sweetheart”—John spent one entire afternoon working on colouring a huge “Wild Safari” art piece for his mum. His perseverance at working on that piece was remarkable.
bulletJanice and Jackie have one of the most gentle and sweet spirits around. Never complaining, always taking delight in those around them, always ready to put an arm over their friend’s shoulder and treasuring friendships. It was quite moving when Janice wept the first evening when she heard that Tracey, who was feeling under the weather, would spend the night at Sue and Dave’s. Janice was starting to miss Tracy.
bulletJackie loves nature. It was serene watching her drink in the beauty of the sea and sunset, and she makes you join in the wonderment of it all as she looks closely at the different trees and bushes and touches their leaves.
bulletDoug is a real ambassador for the Sechelt Camp—eager to show me around the campsite knowing it was my first time, and taking orders for morning coffee in a notebook that Edmund had given him! Coffee in your tent! How’s that for a morning pick-me-up!
bulletLillian and Edmund have almost permanent smiles on their faces and I suspect more than two pairs of eyes between them. They are always noticing if someone is down, if someone needs a hug, if someone needs to be lightened with a joke, if something needs to be done, and very graciously serving and always so positive.
bulletLori-Ann has a bit of Chinese in her…have you seen her eat her taco dinner with chopsticks? It is delightful!
bulletIf you need a hand, Cinzia is one you can depend on to help!
bulletRyan from Sechelt is a great marshmallow toaster!
bulletThe song “Amazing Grace” can bring tears to the eyes of many of our folks who think of their mums, like Jackie, Ruth, and Amanda.
bulletHot-chocolate drunk too late in the evening can keep some awake till 2am! Sue and Lillian discovered “Sleepy-time” tea is a good replacement!
bulletA fleece liner for the sleeping bag makes for a wonderfully sound sleep. David Stocks so graciously offered me his fleece liner and I think that helped me sleep through all the night’s activities! ZZzzzz
bulletRick has a wicked sense of humour and equally wicked laugh, and has a great, big heart! Always looking to welcome and include people. He is also a gadget-guy, I believe he has a flashlight for every occasion!
bulletDave Jr. has an amazing bottomless capacity to give his all to the folks and his love for the folks is simply infectious.
bulletGrowth takes time. I saw the fruits of 30 years of Joy Fellowship Vancouver evident in the lives and spirituality of the folks. It was beautiful. It was also wonderful hearing how Joy Fellowship at Sunshine Coast started and to see the work Sue and Dave are doing, and what God is doing through the lives of the folks of the fellowship at Sechelt.
bulletTracey’s testimony at communion was beautiful…simply “Lord Jesus, thank you for dying for my sins, I am sorry, I won’t do it again.”
bulletEdmund is quite the target when a water-fight ensues. He made a poor attempt to hide behind Lori-Ann but they got him anyway! Splash!
bulletPam from Sechelt is one tenacious crazy-8 card player!
bulletWayne is a potential tent-camper! Katherine put him in Rick’s bed/tent and Wayne was one happy-camper! It was lovely to see the Richmond Bethesda staff and folks…like Michael, Wayne, and Lucy, who came up just for the day to be with us.
bulletIt’s true that food tastes really good outdoors...chow mein, spaghetti, tacos, bbq burgers!
bulletRuth has a spirit of self-control knowing how much to eat and when to say “no,” even at the sight of such yummy food.
bulletA nature walk is so much fun when you take time to slow down and look for the clues that Sue and Dave had put along the way. I learnt to identify the larch, the huckleberry, skunk cabbage, crab apple, salal, and deer hoof prints!
bulletJane is a great one to have as a scavenger-hunt partner, and she is always reminding me that what we were doing was really a good idea! And she was right!

You, Joy, were never far from our hearts and minds. Every time we broke into prayer (which was very often and very often spontaneous!) the folks would be praying for you. Sarah’s prayer has been that the Lord would hold you in his arms.

Hope you had as much fun reading this as I had in recalling and putting in writing the memories of the past few days!

May each new day bring afresh the beauty and truth that his steadfast love endures forever and that his mercies never end. May you experience each day afresh the wonder and joy of being a child in the Father’s loving arms.


 



 

Edmond, Sue, and Lillian

Edmund, Sue and Lillian at Camp Alexandra.
Edmund and Lillian have been amazing in their
support of Joy Fellowship, especially during Joy's
absence during her cancer treatments. Lillian has
also been coordinating friends to keep Joy company
and to help with cooking, driving to appointments,
and the necessities of life.
We are so grateful for them.
 

 

 

Tom and Jack

Tom and Jack McIver at Camp Alexandra. This
was Tom's first camp and he was quickly accepted
and loved by all at camp. Jack loves to
play and sing old Gospel songs with a Country flavor.