Murca – Breaking news today, announced by The Messianic Times: An all summer long Messianic youth summer camp is coming soon. The new camp will be a joint effort between the UMJC, MJAA, Jews for Jesus, and Chosen People Ministries. Rather than send your child one week here or one week there, finally all Messianic children will be able to attend camp together, and not just for one or two weeks at a time.
The camp will be called Camp Hitlakdut, which is Hebrew for “cohesion” and will be available to campers ages 8-15, with the junior counselor program starting at 16. The four largest Messianic Jewish organizations came together and purchased nearly 400 acres of land in Pennsylvania and hope to have the camp up and running by Summer 2018. Camp Hitlakdut will be nine weeks long and will include two five week sessions that overlap one week in the middle. Each session will include four weeks of camp activities plus The YMJA conference for campers ages 13 and up. Campers under 13 will enjoy a week of daily field trips during that time. Parents can choose to send to children to one or both sessions, with a discount for attending both, as well as for sending multiple children.
Hitlakdut will draw from activities and traditions from Camp Gilgal, Camp Kesher, and Camp Or L’Dor, with new activities and traditions that every Messianic child can make together with this new program. Activities will include weekly Erev and Shacharit Shabbat services, Havdalah, and Hebrew and Israeli Dance classes, in addition to regular camp activities, such as boating, swimming, and finding your first relationship.
“Basically all of the camp directors got together and realized we could do a lot more than what we’re doing if we just pool our resources,” Former Camp Gilgal Director, Moose Garrett, explained in an interview. “We not only have the staffing to make a nine week camp happen, but between all the organizations, we actually had enough money to purchase our own property. It just makes sense. There are so many Messianic youth, we may as well just send them all together. If we want to unify the Messianic movement, the best way to do that is to teach them while they’re young. Plus, honestly, the matchmaking is a lot easier when they don’t have a lot of life experience.”
Camp Hitlakdut will cost more than the previous existing Messianic summer camps that were only 1-2 weeks each, but plenty of scholarships will be available, and, with their own property, Hitlakdut will be able to rent out their facilities to other groups throughout the year to offset some of the costs. Early bird registration should be open by the end of 2017, so start saving your Shekels now; their goal is to have 500 children registered to attend the first summer.