As summer comes to a close, stories begin flowing in about the impact of various Angel Tree camps on specific campers. Every year, great stories come out of Camp IdRaHaJe (“I’d Rather Have Jesus”) in the Denver area. This year, longtime Angel Tree volunteer Joe Waldinger received the following letter from a camper named Dupree who had attended Camp IdRaHaJe for a number of years:
Dear Mr. Waldinger,
I want to thank you for a fantastic week at camp ID RA HA JE. I really thank god for the blessing of being able to worship the lord in a wonderful environment, because without you I probably wouldn’t be the Christian I am today. Every year I am excited to go to this camp and it has always brought peace to my life whenever I attend it. Over the next year I am hoping to enroll in the SALT program and have a job at camp next summer. Over the week at camp I really opened my eyes and noticed what I need to do to have a better life with God. From now on I am trying to stay consistent with scripture and prayer, and hoping to stay in contact with the other campers I met. But overall I thank God for the opportunity to attend the camp and have someone like you to help me follow Christ.
Stories like these remind us that we are making a long-term impact in the lives of young people—an impact that is equipping them for adult lives filled with a relationship with God and service to others. And once in a while, we hear a story about a young life that is not just being enriched and encouraged, but one that is being drastically redirected—as in the case of one young man who showed up last week at the Angel Tree football camp at Stanford University. (more…)