Monthly Archives: December 2014

Twelve Days of AH Christmas

On the first day of Christmas, my parents gave to me…a week of camp at Asbury!

week of campOn the second day of Christmas, my parents gave to me two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the third day of Christmas, my parents gave to me three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the fourth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me four hiking books, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the fifth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

DSCN2295On the sixth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me six worship leaders, five campfires …four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the seventh day of Christmas, my parents gave to me seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

lifeguardOn the eighth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me eight climbers climbing, seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the ninth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me nine kayakers rowing, eight climbers climbing, seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

canoeingOn the tenth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me ten crafters crafting, nine kayakers rowing, eight climbers climbing, seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the eleventh day of Christmas, my parents gave to me eleven archers aiming, ten crafters crafting, nine kayakers rowing, eight climbers climbing, seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my parents gave to me twelve camp counselors, eleven archers aiming, ten crafters crafting, nine kayakers rowing, eight climbers climbing, seven lifeguards diving, six worship leaders, five campfires…four hiking boots, three flashlights, two bars of soap, and a week of camp at Asbury!

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Categories: Asbury Hills, Retreats, Summer Camp | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Join the Summer Staff

Monday marks the start of staff hiring, and we are so excited to see who God has to join our ministry.  Want to know more about the Asbury Hills summer staff experience?  Read Paige’s reflections:

DSC_0844 copyMy contract reads, “Photographer and Videographer” but there is so much more to what I do as a summer staffer at Asbury Hills. So much goes into making the week the best week of each individual camper’s life. Some weeks there are only 50 campers but some weeks we break 150 campers, easy. If my job title in my contract read exactly what I do, it would sound something more like, “DVD making, name tag creating, sometimes mail delivering, stand in camp store working, dining hall music DJing, mural painting, white truck driving, s’more assisting, sometimes counselor, alpine tower belaying, band aid getting, golf cart driving, fire building, laundry doing, energizer leading, table setting, creek hiking, cascade jumping, home in the woods visiting, smile making, hug giving, coffee delivering, rocking chair rocking, Bible reading, praising and signing, life time friend making, photographer and videographer.” In my eyes, I have the best job because I get to walk around a beautiful camp and capture the moments of each camper’s experience. The campers, however, are only the half of it. I most definitely work at Asbury Hills to change camper’s lives but I also am surrounded by some of the greatest people. I often say that camp friends are the best friends and I mean it one hundred percent. Some of my closest friends are people I met at camp. The bonds that we build in our own little community are unbreakable. I find myself not even worrying about what is going on in the “real world” because why worry? I have my closest friends right there with me. Trying to explain this bond to non camp friends is the hardest but also the funniest because they will never understand. I could relate basically anything to camp and my real world friends hate me for it. Personally, I think it is out of jealously because I work at the greatest place ever but I could be slightly bias. I once looked up the definition of what a summer camp was and what dictionary.com gave me was this, “a camp, especially one for children during the summer, providing facilities for sleeping and eating, and usually for handicrafts, sports, etc.”   No offense to the people who wrote that but they left out all the good stuff!! After working two summers at Asbury Hills, I think that the definition should read something more like this, “a camp, especially for children who want to have the time of their lives, providing high energy, smiling staff members doing everything they possibly can to make that summer memorable for the children, and usually for trying new things, growing spiritually, and making lifelong friends.” I think I am pretty spot on, but, again, I may be bias.

Categories: Asbury Hills, Summer Camp | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Why Give?

  1. Giving makes you feel happy. A 2008 study by Harvard Business School professor Michael Norton and colleagues found that giving money to someone else lifted participants’ happiness more that spending it on themselves (despite participants’ prediction that spending on themselves would make them happier). These good feelings are reflected in our biology. In a 2006 study, Jorge Moll and colleagues at the National Institutes of Health found that when people give to charities, it activates regions of the brain associated with pleasure, social connection, and trust, creating a “warm glow” effect. Scientists also believe that altruistic behavior releases endorphins in the brain, producing the positive feeling known as the “helper’s high.”
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  2. Giving is good for our health. A wide range of research has linked different forms of generosity to better health, even among the sick and elderly. In his book Why Good Things Happen to Good People, Stephen Post, a professor of preventative medicine at Stony Brook University, reports that giving to others has been shown to increase health benefits in people with chronic illness, including HIV and multiple sclerosis. Researchers suggest that one reason giving may improve physical health and longevity is that it helps decrease stress, which is associated with a variety of health problems.

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  3. Giving promotes cooperation and social connection. When you give, you’re more likely to get back. Several studies, including work by sociologists Brent Simpson and Robb Willer, have suggested that when you give to others, your generosity is likely to be rewarded by others down the line—sometimes by the person you gave to, sometimes by someone else. These exchanges promote a sense of trust and cooperation that strengthens our ties to others—and research has shown that having positive social interactions is central to good mental and physical health. What’s more, when we give to others, we don’t only make them feel closer to us, we also feel closer to them.
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  4. Giving evokes gratitude. Whether you’re on the giving or receiving end of a gift, that gift can elicit feelings of gratitude—it can be a way of expressing gratitude or instilling gratitude in the recipient. And research has found that gratitude is integral to happiness, health, and social bonds. Robert Emmons and Michael McCullough, co- directors of the Research Project on Gratitude and Thankfulness, found that teaching college students to count their blessings and cultivate gratitude caused them to exercise more, be more optimistic, and feel better about their lives overall.
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  5. Giving is contagious. When we give, we don’t only help the immediate recipient of our gift. We also spur a ripple effect of generosity through our community. A study by James Fowler of the University of California, San Diego, and Nicholas Christakis of Harvard, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, shows that when one person behaves generously, it inspires observers to behave generously later, toward different people. In fact, the researchers found that altruism could spread by three degrees—from person to person to person to person. “As a result,” they write, “each person in a network can influence dozens or even hundreds of people, some of whom he or she does not know and has not met.”
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So whether you buy gifts, volunteer your time, or donate money to charity this holiday season, your giving is much more than just a year-end chore. It may help you build stronger social connections and even jump-start a cascade of generosity through your community. And don’t be surprised if you find yourself benefiting from a big dose of happiness in the process.

Thank you for considering Asbury Hills in your giving!

2013 Annual Report

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