October Update
 
Ministry Moment
From Carol Wild, former Ministry Intern at Pilgrim Pines. Carol currently resides in Warren RI, with her husband Ric and attends our Covenant Church in Riverside, RI.

In the spring of 2008  I had been out of college for a year and I was pretty unsure of what I was doing or what I wanted to do with my life. I felt like I needed space to think, space to grow in my relationship with God, and space to know myself better. I had grown up going to camp every summer at Squanto, and then worked in the kitchen and as a counselor while I was in college. Camp was a refuge for me; a place where I could breathe deeply, and a place where I could easily feel God's presence.
 
I was offered the job of Ministry Intern at the Pines, and decided that a year at camp would do my soul good. I moved in at the end of August, 2008, and was soon in the busy season of Fall retreats, helping with programs, setting up tables and chairs in the dining room, vacuuming, cleaning toilets, and making beds every weekend. Groups of people would come and go, and when I wasn't in the office or helping guest groups, I would have time on my own to wander around camp, go for walks and runs around the lake, sit on a bench and pray, and take in the beauty of the place.
 
I entered a new season of life and a new rhythm. I lived alone for the first time. I spent much of my time in solitude, which was also new to me. Looking back on that year, I think about how being an intern shaped me, how it helped me to be me. When I think about that year I see significant building blocks that were put into place, leading to the person I am today, eight years later. During that year I learned how to be alone, how to be OK with just me and my thoughts, and how to rely on God. I went from being extremely uncomfortable, to somewhat comfortable and better yet, affirmed, in doing public speaking. I was asked to preach, which led me to wonder if that's something that I could possibly ever do. I was pushed outside of my comfort zone in speaking in front of large groups, praying aloud in front of groups, and going out of my way to engage with guests I did not know.
 
I always say that year was one of the healthiest years of my life: spiritually, mentally, and physically. Spiritually, I was able to grow in my faith in a way that I never had. I learned so much and was challenged in my faith by many incredible speakers at retreats and family camp, by the other staff at the Pines, and by a group of youth leaders and pastors I met with regularly. I also felt called that year to apply to seminary, which was something I had never thought of doing. I enrolled at North Park Theological Seminary the following Fall. Mentally: it's almost hard to put into words what being at camp does for one's mental health. Resting into the peace of the place, breathing deeply, being alone - all of it was so good for me, and I was really able to grow into myself in a new way. Physically, I pushed myself in new ways by taking up running. I hated it at first, but kept pushing myself, which led to me running the longest distance I ever had, which in turn led me to sign up for my first half marathon.
 
I'm finding myself becoming nostalgic writing this, because that year of my internship meant, and still means, so much to me. It's difficult to put into words how important the year was and how it pushed me. Many interns over many years have done what I have done, and I'm sure it's meant something different to each one of us. For me, it helped me find my way in a world of uncertainty after graduating college. It gave me the time, the space, the solitude, and the support and affirmation of so many people. The year gave me a place where I could find God just a little bit easier, away from a world of distractions and busyness. It pushed me, it stretched me, and it grew me. And I will always be grateful. 

  From the Executive Director:   
Greetings from Pilgrim Pines. 
 
Living in New England, one learns to appreciate the blessings that accompany October.  We always look forward to the symphony of fall colors that light up our forests.  We usually experience our first frost of the season so breaking out our favorite sweater for the first time  is another October tradition.  Fresh apple cider is plentiful.  Piles of bright orange pumpkins are everywhere.  We just LOVE October in New England.   
 
October at camp is also a special time of year.  We take stock of the many blessings that were part of the previous camping season.  We celebrate and give thanks for the opportunity to invite people from all walks of life to experience Christ here at Pilgrim Pines.  We are busy hosting a number of retreats and guest group events.  Our October ministry season is rich and full.  We are blessed and privileged to know that God is using us in so many meaningful ways to serve His people and build His kingdom. 
 
October is also a time when we launch our new budget year.  We have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline for 2016-2017.  Let me highlight a few: 
 
After a long hot summer, the time has come for us to explore air conditioning our Mayflower dining room.   Numerous members of the Pilgrim Pines family have been encouraging us to take this step.  In fact, as a result of the generosity of a few anonymous donors, we have raised most of the funds needed to complete this project.  PRAISE GOD!  Should anyone be interested in specific details or contributing to the cause, please feel free to reach out to me directly.  Otherwise, more information will follow in the coming weeks. 
 
We also are looking to replace a number of roofs across camp.  While roof work, in and of itself, isn't all that exciting, it goes without saying how important it is to the overall health of our ministry.  Before winter sets in, we hope to have replaced the roof on Squanto's Lakeside 6-8 cabin and the roof (backside only) on our Maintenance Building.  While there is more roof work to do, we will need to take stock of our resources and other priorities before moving forward with same.  Should anyone be interested in specific details associated with our roofing needs, please feel free to reach out to me directly. 
 
Another idea in the pipeline for 2017 is the possibility of a Pilgrim Pines golf outing.  For the past several years, our friends at the Peder Hedberg Foundation have been hosting an annual golf outing in memory of our dear friend, Peder Hedberg.  The Hedberg family, Paul, Hope, Eric and Peder are all beloved members of the Pilgrim Pines family.  The Hedberg Foundation has been engaged in fund raising in Peder's name with the goal of giving to organizations that were important to Peder.  Pilgrim Pines is one of those organizations.  This year's golf outing, held on 9-17-16 in CT, was the last to be hosted by the Foundation.  With the Foundation's blessing, Pilgrim Pines will be hoping to carry on the tradition.  While we will always think of Peder when we gather to golf, we know that he would be pleased to see us taking this step as a ministry.  Please be on the lookout for more details as things come together. 
 
As for me personally, I am excited to see how God plans to use me as I grow into my role as Executive Director.  I am, at all times, listening for God's direction and voice as concerns His plans for Pilgrim Pines.   Your continued prayers of support are appreciated.   
 
In His service,  
 
Scott W. Lee
Executive Director


 
Welcome Erik 
We have added Erik Arvidson to our Guest Services team.  Erik joined Pilgrim Pines on October 3rd.  Erik comes to us from Massachusetts with his wife, Jen and two children, Jacob and Hailey.  He will be replacing our friend Andrew Duncan who is moving on to married life in the Boston area.  Erik will be responsible for making sure our guests receive a top notch hospitality experience.  Please join me in welcoming Erik to our ministry team. 
 
Volunteer Spotlight
The Brooks have joined us again for another stint of Volunteering. They are very familiar with the Pines and a huge part of the Pilgrim Pines family. This is why they volunteer:

A familiar saying is "Home is where the Heart is." Just as we make our home in Wheaton, IL welcoming to our friends, family, and strangers; we volunteer with our heart and skills to make PP, a welcoming home to all who visit. Whether we are opening the office door with a friendly smile, answering the phone with a kind voice, applying a bandage or cutting the grass, we do it with love for the Pines. 


 
Chicago Visit
On Sunday, October 16th, approximately 50 members of our Chicago based Pilgrim Pines family members gathered for a "pizza social" at the home of Lisa and Scott Applequist.  Everyone seemed to have a GREAT time sharing camp memories and stories. Our new Executive Director, Scott Lee had a chance to introduce himself and share some plans currently in the pipeline.  We are hoping to make a "Chicago Social" an annual event.  Thanks to all who were able to make it.  A very special thank you to the Applequists for hosting.  
 
Upcoming Events
November 18-20, 2016
November 23-25, 2016
December 2-4, 2016
January 6-8, 2017
Session 1: January 20-22, 2017
Session 2: February 10-12, 2017
February 3-5, 2017
 
2017 Camp Squanto Dates
 
Opportunities 
Product and Service Donation
Imagine owning a home with hundreds of beds, 96 toilets, multiple electronics, multiple wifi locations, a fleet of vehicles, power equipment, etc.
As you can imagine it takes lots to keep the place going.
Pilgrim Pines is always looking for more partners in its ministry.  If you are interested in partnering with us, there are several ways you can contribute. Take a look at our product & services page for ways you can help. Or feel free to make a direct donation by clicking the DONATE button below.
 
 

Our hope is that you will continue to faithfully walk with us, as you have in the past.  So, we are asking you to please consider joining us on this journey with your gifts of talent, time, and treasure.

Volunteer Opportunities
Pilgrim Pines welcomes volunteers all year long
Whether you come by yourself, with your family or through a church group. We are blessed by volunteers who help in the kitchen, serve as weekend hosts, assist in the Mayflower office and work on maintenance projects.
We can really use some volunteer help now and into the fall as we are clearing some areas of overgrowth in the camping area.
 
Your church may even be interested in our " Adopt-a-Cabin" program. When a church adopts a cabin they commit to an annual donation toward its maintenance and often send a volunteer group to specifically tend to their cabin's needs.  Contact  Jim Condap  if your church is interested in volunteering or the Adopt-a-Cabin program.

Pilgrim Pines Conference Center | (603) 352-0443 | info@pilgrimpines.org  |
220 West Shore Road   | Swanzey NH  |  03446

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