News

Camp and Retreat E-News: Gratitude: Caught in a Positive Spiral

Camp and Retreat E-News: Gratitude: Caught in a Positive Spiral

9/25/2019

Living with gratitude ignites a cycle of positivity in our world.


Camp and Retreat E-News: The Gifts of Grace and Gratitude | Save the Date | Blessings Report

Camp and Retreat E-News: The Gifts of Grace and Gratitude | Save the Date | Blessings Report

9/4/2019

Beyond the gift itself and our feeling of appreciation, there is the knowledge that something other than ourselves, greater than ourselves, gifted us.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Striving to Foster a Community with Depth

Camp and Retreat E-News: Striving to Foster a Community with Depth

8/1/2019

Today, we live in a world that lets us connect to more people and over greater distances than ever before. But those connections may be more superficial due to both the number of relationships and the limits of technology. We encourage people to take time away to form deep community, steady community, shaped by spending more time physically present with one another.


Camp and Retreat E-News: From Chaos to Community

Camp and Retreat E-News: From Chaos to Community

7/17/2019

Because community is essential well-being, we understand that the cost of getting there is worth it.  We may not like the experience in the midst of the chaos but the stories that we get to tell later of meeting the challenge says something that we like about ourselves and the community of which we are a part: together with one another we are strong and better off.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Giving and Receiving Acceptance

Camp and Retreat E-News: Giving and Receiving Acceptance

6/12/2019

Acceptance, understood as an embodiment of compassionate curiosity towards ourselves and others, makes space for others to be seen and valued as they are regardless of how in-line it is with our own understandings.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Offering the Grace of Acceptance Through Christian Hospitality and Spaces to Grow

Camp and Retreat E-News: Offering the Grace of Acceptance Through Christian Hospitality and Spaces to Grow

5/22/2019

This grace of acceptance offered to me by the church, through camp and retreat ministry, continues to inspire me in my work and life. Through these next few weeks as we focus on Acceptance, I hope that you are encouraged to offer and/or receive this wonderful gift


Camp and Retreat E-News: Living Christian Lives Filled with Joy

Camp and Retreat E-News: Living Christian Lives Filled with Joy

5/1/2019

We encourage you, dear reader, to look for joy in one of the simplest of things, food. To care for yourself in new and engaging ways as you prepare food for yourself and for others, remembering that how we share with others and consider their needs is one of the most holy acts, for together we can experience joy around the table so that our lives may be abundant.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Experiencing the Joy that is Available to us Every Day

Camp and Retreat E-News: Experiencing the Joy that is Available to us Every Day

4/3/2019

For me, joy is a gift that is available to us each day. I believe that, for most of us, the experience of joy is a matter of choice. While I am aware that joy can come from a spontaneous surprise in our lives, the choice remains as to whether or not we will accept these gifts, even on days that seem joyless.


Camp and Retreat E-News:  Executive Director Todd Bartlett Featured in Crossover Reflection

Camp and Retreat E-News: Executive Director Todd Bartlett Featured in Crossover Reflection

3/20/2019

Each week, in 3-4 pages, McLaren invites us to revisit biblical principles for living. You’ll receive blog posts to expand your study, with reflections and prayers and a place for comments and conversation. As we journey together, we’ll add opportunities for conversation, further study and action."

The blog post for this week, titled We Make the Road by Walking, was written by Executive Director of Camp and Retreat Ministries, Todd Bartlett.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Blessings Report

Camp and Retreat E-News: Blessings Report

3/6/2019

In their weekly e-news, the National United Methodist Camp & Retreat Ministry includes a blessings report. This report gives readers the opportunity to share the blessings that they experience at camp. We are happy to provide a similar report in our weekly publication!


Camp and Retreat E-News: Blessings report

3/1/2019

In their weekly e-news, the National United Methodist Camp & Retreat Ministry includes a blessings report. This report gives readers the opportunity to share the blessings that they experience at camp. We are happy to start providing a similar report in our weekly publication!


Camp and Retreat E-News: Through Challenges and Difficulty, God Gives Us Hope

Camp and Retreat E-News: Through Challenges and Difficulty, God Gives Us Hope

2/20/2019

When it becomes natural for campers to face the difficult challenges in their lives, they are able to develop a sense of what it means live out their Christian faith. These elements are sign posts to guide them in their relationship with God and with all of humanity; and because they endured, persisted, and built character along the way, they can live with hope that this moment of difficulty is not all that there is.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Collins Invites Us to Experience Wonder Through Our Connections

Camp and Retreat E-News: Collins Invites Us to Experience Wonder Through Our Connections

1/16/2019

I have witnessed wonder in all of these forms, among others, here at Alton L Collins Retreat Center and at many other camp and retreat ministries. I think we have these experiences of wonder because camp and retreat ministries can help us slow down and connect more deeply.


Camp and Retreat E-News:Discover How Executive Director Todd Bartlett Experiences Wonder at Camp

Camp and Retreat E-News:Discover How Executive Director Todd Bartlett Experiences Wonder at Camp

1/9/2019

This week we begin our year-long journey on values by exploring Wonder. Part of what I believe the directors and I sensed is that there is so much that has been explained about our world that there is little space left to encounter wonder. Another element of wonder is to get lost in connecting with something outside of, or bigger than, ourselves while at the same time we experience a deep connection to it.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Camp and Retreat Ministries Share Their Thoughts On Values for 2019

Camp and Retreat E-News: Camp and Retreat Ministries Share Their Thoughts On Values for 2019

1/2/2019

For 2019 the directors and I will be writing about values. Each director looked at a list of values and were asked to select seven that guide their work.


Camp and Retreat E-News: Give the Gift of Camp

Camp and Retreat E-News: Give the Gift of Camp

12/19/2018

With 2019 right around the corner, all events are now open for registration!


Camp and Retreat E-News: Discover How Camp Makes a Difference

Camp and Retreat E-News: Discover How Camp Makes a Difference

12/12/2018

Beginning in 2015, the research team at Sacred Playgrounds began work to answer the question:"What is the impact of the one-week summer camp experience on the lives of the primary participants and their supporting networks?" The research has yielded some fascinating discoveries!


Camp and Retreat E-News: Give the Gift of Camp

Camp and Retreat E-News: Give the Gift of Camp

12/12/2018

With 2019 right around the corner, the excitement and anticipation for our return to camp is building! All events are now open to you for registration.


Food for Thought: Experiencing Love and Justice at Alton L. Collins Retreat Center

Food for Thought: Experiencing Love and Justice at Alton L. Collins Retreat Center

12/3/2018

Gracious hospitality is a core concept that shapes our ministry, and the meals that we serve are a critical component of that hospitality.


Give the Gift of Camp to Someone You Love

Give the Gift of Camp to Someone You Love

11/28/2018

Each year, because of generous donors like you, Camp and Retreat Ministries offers over $15,000 in camp scholarships. The Joy Fund enables us to respond to anyone who is in financial need and applies for assistance. We have never turned anyone away for lack of ability to pay for camp! Please help us continue to be able to state that boldly!


Our Lives Are a Testimony to Jesus and the Power of Love and Hospitality

11/21/2018

It is with thanksgiving that I celebrate ALL those who have inspired me in the doing of the work of Camp and Retreat Ministries.  Your life and energy are tremendous gifts, to me, and to all the people who are touched by this organization!


Annual Appeal is LIVE!!!

11/14/2018

Annual Appeal Alert!! *Every* site has a project YOU can participate in with your Gifts, your Prayers, your Presence, your Service, and your Witness!!


Sawtooth Job Announcement

10/23/2018

Oregon-Idaho Camp and Retreat Ministries is hiring a director for Sawtooth Camp.


Upcoming Events @ Collins

Upcoming Events @ Collins

10/3/2018

Check out these amazing opportunities!


Collins Shares its Mission with Church Partners

Collins Shares its Mission with Church Partners

10/3/2018

Of the Seven Foundations of United Methodist Camp and Retreat Ministries, partnering with United Methodist churches and agencies sounds both the most boring and obligatory.  I say this being fully committed to the work of The United Methodist Church and as an ordained Elder serving under appointment. But still, on the surface, this foundation might appear to be less engaging than all of the others.


Alton L. Collins/Leewood: Making the Choice to Be Wild Since 1941

9/27/2018

It is often surprising to people to find this segment of forest tucked away in Clackamas county.  

As you land at Portland International Airport amidst the noise, traffic and buildings of the city, you can see Mt. Hood looming, but it seems that wilderness is so far away.  You probably leave the city via congested interstates and will soon find yourself in sprawling suburbia.  And finally, because of planning policy that limits that sprawl, the suburban landscape eventually gives way to farms stretching over miles and miles.  But somehow, it is that last turn that is most surprising, the one from the winding country highway onto our driveway and you suddenly realize that you are leaving the the farms behind and entering a towering forest. Forty-five minutes from the blessings and curses of the modern age, you enter into a healthy and diverse forest.


Connecting to the Larger Family of Church

Connecting to the Larger Family of Church

9/26/2018

Oregon-Idaho Camp and Retreat Ministries operates as a team together where directors share and learn from one another in growing in our ability to fulfill our mission as “People dedicated to providing quality environments of Christian hospitality and learning.”


Camp = Sabbath from Technology

Camp = Sabbath from Technology

8/15/2018

Believe me, I understand the irony of this article. most likely read on a mobile device! In the other part of my life, I also work for the Missional Wisdom Foundation, an organization that has a Rule of Life, found here: https://www.missionalwisdom.com/rule-of-life/. One of the substitutions I would like to make in my life is under the 'Prayers' heading: "We will fast from food once a week." Not only is this the one part of the Rule that most people stumble over when they first read through it, but I don't know about you, but I have a cell-phone addiction, so fasting from all mobile technology would be a more challenging and mindful practice than fasting from food. Check out this blog-post from Gregg Hunter of Christian Camp & Conference Association (CCCA). His last question seems directed toward me - what would it look like for me to leave my cellphone in the car when I am a guest at camp? - Eric Conklin


Intro to Foundation 5: Teaching Creation Care and Appreciation

Intro to Foundation 5: Teaching Creation Care and Appreciation

8/7/2018

My journey with creation care and appreciation began when I was a young child. When our family would go camping, my sister and I were paid by our parents 1 penny for every scrap of garbage that we picked up. This helped us to live out the “leave it better than you found it” mantra. There were field trips, scout trips, and of course, church camps, which all demonstrated and encouraged me to live out these values.


Are you a Cracked Pot?

Are you a Cracked Pot?

7/30/2018

You may have heard variations of this old "campfire" story before, or you may be reading it for the first time. Either way, be reminded that your flaws can create beauty in this world:


A waterbearer in India had two large pots, one hung on each end of a pole, which she carried across her neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it. While the other pot was perfect, and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the mistress's house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water to her master's house.

Click here to read the whole story as told in AmazingWomenRock.com


Do you know your Tag games?

Do you know your Tag games?

7/27/2018

Tag is making a popular comeback, thanks to the new movie in theaters now, but do you know these variations of  the classic game of tag? With all of these in the tool box, I can't think of an easier way for kids and youth to get out their energy!


Collins' Teachable Moments

Collins' Teachable Moments

6/28/2018

Our Camp and Retreat Ministries sites provide wonderful opportunities to seek out teachable moments that help us grow our capacity for being Christian spiritual leaders.  What are the teachable moments that you can receive or share today?


Camping's Continued Legacy of Leadership

Camping's Continued Legacy of Leadership

6/6/2018

I am proud that I am a part of a denomination whose forebears gave birth to these beautiful settings from the early days of the Methodist movement through to present day.


Staff Development in the Wild

Staff Development in the Wild

6/1/2018

While working on site for Twinlow United Methodist Church Camp in Rathdrum, Idaho 20 years ago, I received my call to service as a clergy person in the United Methodist Church. In fact, most of the young adults I worked with over my years at Twinlow made significant changes to their prospective career paths because of their time working at camp.


Nurturing Our Faith Means Living Out Love

Nurturing Our Faith Means Living Out Love

4/26/2018

This one should be obvious for a retreat center, right? I mean, what is the point of a Christian retreat center if not to provide a place and ways to nurture people in their faith? But the part of this that I want to reflect on with you today is the nature of Christian faith and discipleship.


Nurturing Christian Faith

Nurturing Christian Faith

4/18/2018

For over 100 years we have been engaged in the work of nurturing Christian faith and discipleship in some of this region’s most beautiful outdoor spaces.


Collins Teaches us About Hospitality by Paying Attention Deeply

Collins Teaches us About Hospitality by Paying Attention Deeply

4/11/2018

We may not always be able to tell when someone is genuine, but often we have a good sense of it. This is why we work hard to hire staff who have a calling to offering hospitality, who feel that this is part of who they are. This is also why we continually talk about hospitality as a staff, to remind ourselves of our calling. By cultivating a community focused on offering hospitality, we work to ensure that it is a heartfelt expression.


Provide Sacred Places Apart: A Perspective from Alton L. Collins Retreat Center

Provide Sacred Places Apart: A Perspective from Alton L. Collins Retreat Center

1/19/2018

Whether one is taken in by the tall trees, the harmonious architecture, or simply the atmosphere of peace that infuses the space, there is something special that happens as one enters the property.


Todd Bartlett's Thoughts on Grounding Elements

11/1/2017

I have shared some reflections about important elements to our experiences at our camps and retreat center. The current list begins with the physical elements of: land, water, sky and fire.


Transformed Toward Gratitude

Transformed Toward Gratitude

10/18/2017

Last September, I agreed to serve as the interim Executive Director for Camp and Retreat Ministries in Oregon-Idaho, until a national search could be conducted to hire the next Executive Director, which turned out to be me!


Warm Hospitality Transforms at Collins

Warm Hospitality Transforms at Collins

10/18/2017

Life is always about transformation. One thing that makes our camps and retreat centers special is that we are places where we are intentionally cultivating positive transformation. Sometimes we are able to direct our hearts and lives to bring about positive transformation, and sometimes the Spirit of God tosses aside our carefully crafted plans and provides us with blessings beyond our imagination.


What are the 7 Foundations of Camp & Retreat Ministries?

What are the 7 Foundations of Camp & Retreat Ministries?

3/16/2017

The 7 Foundations of United Methodist Camp and Retreat Ministries (nationally, UMCRM) began with a prayerful discernment centered on two specific questions:

What must we do well in order to be truly effective now and into the future? 
What is absolutely vital for us to focus on in fulfilling the church’s mission within the unique camp and retreat setting?


Get the Go Camping Logo on Land’s End Merchandise

4/13/2016

Visit business.landsend.com/store/gocamping/ to have the Camp and Retreat Ministries logo embroidered on any number of clothing or other items that Land’s End offers.  You can order one piece at a time, in the size and color you wish.  There is also an option to vary the colors of embroidery threads to be better visible on the material you choose (you could even choose pink, purple and orange!). The National Camp and Retreat logo is also available.  The logo fee is typically about $6.00 in addition to the price of the clothing article, but often coupon codes can be found with an online search that may eliminate this or the shipping charge.


Volunteering, Training, and Working at Camp

Volunteering, Training, and Working at Camp

2/9/2016

Are you feeling nudged to work at camp as paid or volunteer staff? Opportunities always abound to be a part of a dynamic, inspired, and hardworking team.


Giving to Camp Just Got Easier!

7/16/2015

We are in the thick of the summer camp season, and we have been blessed to hear stories of rejuvenation and exploration. One camp mother exclaimed about her daughter’s Wallowa Lake experience:   Wallowa Lake Horse Campers “I have been a ...


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A partnership between The Oregon-Idaho Conference of The United Methodist Church
and The Episcopal Diocese of Oregon