July 18, 2019
When Tim Redmon saw in an email that Galilee was looking for a male chaperone for reCHARGE summer camp at Skycroft Conference Center in Maryland, he thought it looked like a great opportunity. After all, Tim is a student at Radford University studying music education. A little on the job training dealing with dozens of Galilee youth (oh, and hundreds of kids from other area churches) sounded like good experience
“I did not expect reCHARGE to be so much more fun than I thought it was going to be. It changed me for the better and I would absolutely do it again if offered the opportunity,” Tim says. “Not only do you get to go on this trip (for free), you experience what the campers experience—you see the word of God in action. The first two days I was focused on my duties as a chaperone, but soon I felt that God connection.”
College student Tim Redmon stands with Galilee youth members Luke and Noah.
“This was my first time chaperoning anything,” says Tim, “and I treated it like a serious job. Honestly, the kids at reCHARGE surprised me. They were well behaved, kind, and independent! When it came to getting up early, I would set the alarm— but they would get themselves up. They were extremely responsible throughout the trip and I’m glad for that. They also treated me like a friend, and not a chaperone. I liked that because it felt like I was one of them and not an adult watching them. I still made sure to set some rules, of course. But they didn’t really need it. I’m so happy I was able to spend time with these kids.”
Tim has been a member of Galilee his whole life. He was baptized at Galilee and has attended since then with his parents, April and Bruce, and his siblings. It was participating in the choir while a sixth grader that sparked Tim’s interest in singing and music. That’s also the reason why Tim is going into music education. “I love to sing, and I want others to feel the same way as I do. I sing/listen to mostly Broadway and Disney songs.” For all his time at Galilee, this was Tim’s first camp-style retreat. It had an impact on him.
“I think this camp shows kids the true love of God. And not just the kids. For me, it took a day or two, but when it hit me, I felt like God’s light shined on me. I believe this camp can truly change people for the better and so I think the value of this camp is to get a better connection with God in a fun and positive way.”
“The Skycroft counselors were incredible. Each counselor/employee was so enthusiastic and made you feel good, especially in the mornings (camp starts really early). One of the things I loved was a show the counselors put on called “Late Night in the Morning.” Two counselors would be at a table at the front of the auditorium, and treat it like they were on a late night talk show, with us as the audience. They were hysterical. But it was all part of their excitement in teaching us about the word of God. It made me feel right at home.”
Camp wasn’t all gagaball and ice cream.
“The service project Galilee’s youth did at reCHARGE was helping out with the garden area of the Western Maryland Hospital Center. It was mostly picking up sticks and pulling weeds, but I know our help meant a lot to them. It was nice to meet the employees and the residents of the hospital center. I would love to go back and help them out even more.”
“I could see that each of our kids wanted to be there to help out. To look at what we accomplished on the final mission day, really made us feel good about ourselves. I feel that was the truly rewarding.”
“The activity that was most fun was Color Wars. We were on Team Orange and I’ve never seen a group so enthusiastic and united as our color team. We all helped each other to accomplish our missions and were excited to see the points tally each morning.”
“The final night of camp, with a group campfire, is one of my favorite memories because I felt that, on our last night there, everyone was having such a great time—cooking smore’s and having a blast overall. At least to me, we all felt unified. Returning to our cabin after the campfire made me realize how much I’m gonna miss this camp, and how much I want to go back next year.”
Sometimes the youth are more tired than the chaperones!
“reCHARGE help me reconnect with my religion. It took a bit of time, like I stated before, but when it hit, I felt like something changed inside me. I realize that I haven’t been worshiping God as much as I should be…that I just live life how I want, but I forget God is there with me. Being at camp made me realize that and changed my ways for the better.”
“It’s cheesy to think, but when I saw that email from Galilee, I think that was God’s way of saying, “Go to this camp. Have fun. Reconnect with me.” I’m so glad I went—and I definitely encourage others to do the same!”