It’s that time of year again. Rochester’s winter is in full effect outside, and we’re beginning to dream of the hope that arrives in April. The chill that reaches directly into our bones will eventually make way for warm(er) spring days, cool rains, and the rebirth of life outside.
For the last 19 winters, I have always counted Flower City Work Camp (FCWC) as the official launch of spring. Yes, camp has been held in frigid weather and we occasionally have snow, but the same hope that is found in the coming of spring is found in the mission of FCWC.
FCWC is a camp held over spring break for students in grades 7-12 coming from churches all over greater Rochester. What makes this spring break experience rather unique is that students spend the week working during the day and staying at a church each night. They work in either a house in need of repair, with children at a day camp-like experience, or leading kids and teens at a sports camp. After all that, they share a meal and worship for a few hours with their peers.
In the years before the coronavirus pandemic up to 55 churches would participate with close to 800 students attending!
I can honestly say that FCWC has been one of my favorite experiences since coming on staff. Year after year I have been able to see the difference it makes in the lives of students as they not only serve neighbors in Rochester but also experience life-change as they see what it means to follow Jesus in real time.
But the students and those they serve are only half the story!
It takes an incredible amount of adults to run a camp of this magnitude. Adults are needed to lead the students on their sites, deliver materials to teams in need, and provide meals, security, health care… pretty much anything you can think of for a week-long camp with students!
I have seen some faithful volunteers come back year after year because they love working with the students and teaching them some of the knowledge they have picked up along the way. I have seen the same volunteers at dinner for my entire tenure because they love being able to hear the students talk about their days and all that they experienced. I have heard of families completely re-working family vacations so that they do not miss camp and the impact they know it will have.
God has blessed FCWC in incredible ways, and Browncrofters have been there serving since the beginning in 1985. Might this be an opportunity for you? I can tell you… it’s amazing to see students serving, worshiping, and laughing together as they grow in Christ.
Adult sign-ups for many important positions need to be in by February 1. Please take some time to pray and consider this opportunity today!