Posted by: morgan1965 | August 15, 2010

Going To A Camp Meeting

Have you ever been to a camp meeting? I can remember going with my parents to camp meetings on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. During my teen years, camp meetings were still popular among the Methodist churches on the Eastern Shore. The camp meeting was an annual event and people would come from great distances to attend these gatherings. Some camp meetings would last a weekend while others might last for several weeks. The preaching services were very popular at the old camp meetings.

In New Jersey, where I did my entire pastoral ministry, they have the historic Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association. The Camp Meeting is housed in the town of Ocean Grove, New Jersey on the Atlantic Ocean. People go to Ocean Grove to enjoy the Jersey shore and the ocean breezes. Also, people go to Ocean Grove to participate in the Camp Meeting that runs for several weeks during the summer. The Camp Meeting Association offers worship opportunities, preaching events, bible study and other religious entertainment. A number of people live at the camp meeting during the summer months.

I had an opportunity to visit the Ocean Grove Camp meeting this summer. To be sure, the modern day camp meeting is different from the outdoor camp meetings that I remember. At Ocean Grove, they have a marvelous tabernacle that houses a magnificent pipe organ. The worship services incorporate a marvelous choir.

On the Sunday evening that I attended, I was not disappointed by the choral presentations and the organ music. Bishop Peter Weaver, New England Conference, was the preacher. His scripture text was I Corinthians 11:23-34; and, his sermon theme was “Remember.” He invited the congregation to remember our baptism. He urged us always to remember Jesus, not worrying about yesterday, but understanding that Jesus goes with us into the future. The importance of remembering is that we are strengthened in our forward thinking and movement.

After the sermon, we celebrated the Lord’s Supper. In this celebration we were able to remember that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. When we allow the blood of Jesus to wash away our sins, we are able to find new life in Jesus Christ.

Camp meetings are becoming a phenomenon of the past, but it is good to remember them as we go into the future. It is good to tarry for a while with likeminded pilgrim disciples to worship and to study the scriptures.

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