Summer Day Camp has brought children at Mariners and their friends on the Coastside closer to Christ for more than 15 years.

Taylor Duncan, who will minister to children as a Day Camp station leader for the first time this year, recalls how important the experience was to her faith journey as a child. “Day camp was the foundation to my faith, hearing about him and growing in Christ year after year,” Taylor said.

But it wasn’t until her first experience as a youth serving the children at Day Camp that Christ’s invitation became clear. “We’re planting seeds, sharing Christ with children,” Taylor said. “I think it’s important to be leading kids on the Coastside to Jesus.”

The Day Camp theme for this year is “Roar! Life is wild. God is good.” Children ages kindergarten through Grade 5 can attend week-long half day or full day sessions either the week of July 22-26 or July 29-Aug. 2. Half day sessions are available for preschoolers during the second week only. Each day the children hear a message as a large group and then break into age-specific “Zoo Crews” led by a volunteer ministry team to reinforce each lesson with a hands-on, interactive activities. Afternoons are devoted to field trips.

Thursday is easily the most meaningful day of camp. “It’s the Good Friday of Day Camp,” Taylor explained. “The kids learn how Jesus died on the cross for them. It’s an alter call for kids. I think it’s so amazing. You get to have conversations with them. And whether they decide to accept Christ right then or not, you can see that they are really thinking about Jesus and trying to understand.”

Day Camp registration fills quickly each summer, and the adults and youths who minister to the children in a variety of ways are critical to the success of the program. To learn more about opportunities to serve, call or email Kaitlin Gehret, Children’s Ministry Director, at kaitlin@marinerscc.orgor 650-726-5959.

Taylor encourages both adults and youth to consider giving a piece of their summer to minister to the children at Day Camp. “It doesn’t take a lot of qualifications. You just need to show up to help make it the best experience possible for the kids,” Taylor said. “It’s really rewarding to see God working in the kids’ lives.”

by Dan Page, Volunteer Storyteller