Asian Camp is a summer camp for high school to college age youth entering 10th grade through their sophomore year in college.
Asian American Summer Camp (AC) is a Christian youth camp sponsored by the National Japanese American United Methodist Caucus (NJAUMC) for all youth entering 10th grade to sophomores in college in the Fall of 2019. In its 45 year history of empowering and inspirational ministry, Asian Camp has developed a reputation amongst it’s participants as a family-like community, yielding lifelong relationships and faithful servants of God.
The mission of “Asian Camp” is to reach out to youth and young adults in our Asian American churches and communities, in effort to lead them toward a closer relationship with Christ. Through worship, fellowship, prayer, growth groups, community builders, and other outdoor activities, Asian Camp encourages campers, as well as staff, to explore their faiths, reflect on their personal identities, and use their spiritual gifts for God’s glory. With special focus on equipping for the future, Asian Camp seeks to instill pride in each camper’s spiritual, cultural, and ethnic identity.
A hallmark of Asian Camp that sets it apart from other Christian summer camps is a tradition of creating its own programming, with inclusion of activities that focus on our Asian heritages and social justice issues relevant to today’s youth. With every aspect of programming, Asian Camp aims to foster an atmosphere of love and acceptance, where youth feel secure in their personal identities, but are still challenged to be all that God has created them to be. Within this context, our intent is to create life-affirming experiences that will root Asian Camp participants in understanding of their relationships with God and their identity.
Begun in 1974 under the direction of Rev. Peter Chen and Rev. Harry Marakami, the impetus for the formation of Asian Camp was the realization that the Asian American youth of our United Methodist churches were not attending district and conference camps, as they were finding that these camps did not meet their needs or speak to their unique experiences as ethnic minorities. Rev. Chen and Rev. Marakami went to the heart of our Asian American United Methodist churches and developed a camp that would speak to the youth right where they were, but also challenged their faith so that they might come to a deeper and more meaningful relationship with Christ, seen through the eyes and felt in the heart and known by the Spirit of the Asian American faith experience.
Throughout the years, the ministry of Asian Camp has touched and influenced the lives of a great many persons, with its emphasis on the development of spiritual maturity, self-worth and identity, learning to work with and interact with others from different backgrounds and experiences, and fostering an awareness of social dynamics and social justice issues. From our ministry has emerged many persons who have become excellent citizens and leaders in diverse fields of endeavor, who have also continued to shape the lives of our churches and our faith communities.
Today, the ministry of Asian Camp is more greatly needed than ever, for we are aware that our youth are seeking to find meaning, direction and wholeness at a time when they are receiving many mixed messages in their lives, In this Asian Camp seeks to give them hope and promise for today, and for their future. We believe in the ministry of Asian Camp, and believe that we can and will make a difference in the lives of our youth, enabling them, with God’s help, to shape their tomorrows, so that they might be all that God has created them to be.
Please pray for us in our preparations, and pray for the success of our camp, that those who come to Asian Camp 2019 will be touched by the life-transforming love of Christ.