By Cass DuCharme 



I spent last week with Steve Brown, Jennifer Eadie, and ten of our youth at Passport Averett in Danville, Virginia. To say it was a great week is an understatement. The Bible study groups, worship services, work sites, games, and food were out of this world. We worked hard, played hard, and came home exhausted. But, isn't that what summer camp is all about?


The theme for this year's camp was "Life Together," hence the name of this article. We spent the week encountering Christ, embracing community, extending grace, and being empowered. We were able to live life together with our youth group as well as 300 other youth and adults from around the country who shared a common bond -- Christ. The theme verse for the week was "My children, we should love people not only with words and talk, but by our actions and true caring" 1 John 3:18. I got to see our youth live that verse out each day as they served people in a community they had never been in before. They worked on Habitat houses, helped out at a pregnancy crisis center, played with neighborhood children, and shared Christ's love, not only with words, but with their actions. You would have been proud.


Throughout the week, I thought of our Highland Hills family and how we share life together. Sure, most of the time we live life together at 1370 Briarcliff Road. But our lives in Christ aren't confined to the 18 acres that make up our church grounds. They extend throughout our community, our state, our nation, and, yes, the world. Highland Hills has a heart for encountering Christ, embracing community, extending grace, and being empowered. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, "Christianity means community through Jesus Christ and in Jesus Christ. No Christian community is more or less than this."


The youth and I had a great time at Passport Averett sharing Christ's love. Thank you for all of the prayers and financial support that were given to make this trip possible. I am proud of our youth and I am proud to be a part of the Christian community called Highland Hills. A church where true concern for the spiritual growth of all of our children, youth, and adults is taken seriously and where the love of Christ is found in all of our mission endeavors. I look forward to a bright future for our church as we continue living life together in Christ.