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Answering the Call

Wendy still remembers the night she got the phone call telling her she would be a Lutherock counselor. Deacon Wendy (Engelhard) Roberts was a student at Appalachian State University and had applied to be on the 1992 summer staff. Though she had only been to Lutherock once, she had fallen in love with the place.

“I was elated to be invited to be on staff,” Wendy says. “I was so excited to get to spend a summer outdoors with this special community of people.”  Wendy worked for three summers at camp as a counselor and, during her last summer, as an environmental educator. “My summers at camp were so formational for me,” Wendy recalls. “Camp kept me connected to faith during my college years and instilled in me a lifelong love of God’s creation.”

Wendy still relies on many of the formational experiences she had while working as a counselor. Her summers taught her about responsibility, persistence in the face of adversity, and the value of being trusted by others. “I’ll never forget the pressure of having to start a fire and cook a hot meal for a group of waiting campers,” Wendy said. “But I’ll also never forget how young people supported each other with love and grace, and you could feel God in action.”

After serving in congregational ministry for many years, this summer, Wendy was called to the position of Candidacy Coordinator for the North Carolina Synod. In her new role, Wendy works with candidates for ministry and the Synod’s lay ministers. “It’s a joy connecting people with their passions and helping them go the places God calls them,” Wendy says. “I love affirming that God is calling some to rostered ministry but also affirming that some are called to lead in other ways.”

“Earlier this week, I was in conversation with someone who is entering the candidacy process, and their experience at camp was an important part of their story,” Wendy shares. For many, serving on summer staff at a church camp is a step toward a vocation in ministry.  “I think camp helps us escape the noise of everyday life,” she says. “It gives us ways to be in relationship with God and each other that help us hear things more clearly.”

Wendy is still grateful she got the call to be a summer counselor at Lutherock, and she looks forward to continuing to walk with those who are answering all kinds of calls in their lives. Your generosity to our NovusWay camping ministries serves to raise up new leadership for the church by clarifying vocation and building responsibility, persistence, and trustworthiness. Thank you for your generosity to this ministry we all share.