Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Girls Camp Zarahemla Style With a Side of Virtue

Welcome back campers!!  We as a stake headed up to Camp Zarahemla last week to have the time of our lives and to spiritually strengthen the young women of our stake.

This year, as a Stake, we focused on the 13th Article of Faith and each ward was given a word from the 13th article of faith that also tied in with their yw value color.  The stake was given the word "chaste" and we had the yw value of virtue. I am so glad we did!

Each day, the stake focused on all the aspects that chastity and virtue entail.  The first day, we did a skit about a princess on a quest and then that night we talked about how that quest and the symbolism's in the quest tied into their lives.  Sister Monson ended with her talk about sexual purity.  IT WAS AWESOME!!  She challenged the young women to commit to be sexually pure from this day forward.  Then she read straight from the For Strength of Youth of what sexual purity is.  It was blunt, it was bold and it was the exact thing that needed to be said especially in today's world.

The second night, our Stake President came up and gave a talk about Temple Marriages.  Sister Longhurst compared making temple covenants to the story of the Secret Garden.  That we need keys to open the gate to get us inside.  President Longhurst was also bold in that he told the young women to choose wisely who they date and hang out with.  He also counseled them that no one should touch them in their "bikini" areas.  The girls totally got that one.  He then had each of the young women come up and shake his and Sister Monson's hand giving a verbal commitment that they would go to the temple.  The youth then shook hands with the rest of the Stake Presidency and the YW Stake Presidency to end at a table where they would sign a certificate that committed them that they would go to the temple.  VERY COOL!

The third day we did an Armor of God hike where each of the SYCL's taught about their piece of armor and bore testimony of what they felt on that subject.  The young women had paper dolls that they dressed as they went to each station. Very powerful coming from the youth.  We then hiked up a very tall hill and unfurled and raised our virtue flag to the world.  A special group of young women sang the Armor of God song and then we had a special prayer and blessing by Bishop Broadhead.  I was amazed how strong the spirit felt up there.

We also had a ton of fun with tubing down a river, a 200ft slip and slide down a large hill, games, candy, more candy and gourmet smores.

I am so grateful to be part of the events that help build testimony and strengthen the youth.  I think the hardest part of my calling is watching the youth I love make poor choices and thinking "What more could I have done to help them make the best choices in their lives"

It's time to be bold, ladies!  Be steadfast and immovable and lead by example of what power comes from a righteous woman!

Yay Girls Camp!

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