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A future-visioning project of Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers, Inc.

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Presentation on theme: "A future-visioning project of Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers, Inc."— Presentation transcript:

1 A future-visioning project of Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers, Inc.

2 The Building the Continuum project provides tools and training to help Episcopal Camps and Conference Centers prepare for the next 5-10 years. We aim to help centers: Creatively and proactively vision and plan; Address current realities of the world’s shifting engagement with technology, community and the Episcopal church; Analyze existing and potential assets, programs and projects. Share resources and ideas amongst centers.

3 Summit Will the continuing evolution of technology enhance human community and connection or will technology diminish community and connections among people? Will people become more engaged with the Episcopal tradition and mission in a technological world or more disengaged/detached from the tradition and mission?

4 Camp Mitchell (Diocese of Arkansas) St. Crispin’s (Diocese of Oklahoma) Procter Center (Diocese of Southern Ohio) Waycross (Diocese of Indianapolis) Sheldon Calvary (Diocese of Pittsburgh)

5 New Technologies Provide Spiritual Alternatives To Episcopal Tradition & Mission New Technologies Promote Individualism While People Disengage From Episcopal Tradition & Mission Episcopal Tradition & Mission Thrive In A Technological World Episcopal Tradition & Mission Engages People Isolated By New Technologies


7 Technologically-mediated relationships, using new devices and social media networks, become the norm, while physical connections and community diminish in importance. Many of the activities once done in physical places – education, commerce and worship – are now done primarily online. People are increasingly cut-off from creation and the natural world, preferring a virtual world. The rise of technology creates an almost “hyper- individualism” at the expense of community and relationships, and exacerbates the decline of local faith communities, including Episcopal institutions. Traditional approaches to faith formation are challenged to engage people in mission. Episcopal communities are increasingly marginalized in a world dominated by technology.

8 “For Sale”: Reinvestment opportunity Hyper-individualized (virtual?) camping experience Serve the faithful remnant – countercultural, not traditional Attract staff  Biblical roleplaying videogame Holographically connect people Camp develops apps Training center for uninvolved

9 Faith formation in Episcopal communities invites seekers and prepares people for engagement with Episcopal tradition and mission. Utilizing new technologies and social media, Episcopal communities inspire lifelong disciples who are growing in their Christian faith and are actively engaged in transforming the world. Episcopal communities optimize technologies to build relationships and provide faith formation in physical places – congregations, camps, conference centers, and schools – that are digitally-enhanced, extending ministries into the everyday lives of people anywhere and everywhere. Rooted in Episcopal tradition, people eagerly connect and mobilize for innovative mission and collective action.

10 Opportunity to view programs online that you weren’t able to attend; Continued program online after an in-person event Using the technology already in place/use Global opportunity/component A place for regular in-person meetings to supplement regular online meetings What does it look like to live as a Christian in the digital world? What is your digital footprint: How does our center extend our mission into the digital world? Use technology to extend indoor information/exhibits to explore the outdoors/surrounding area. Wire-free technology enables more spaces Opportunities to have/enhance relationships with campers year-round Develop video/online content that relates to upcoming lessons for local congregations. Camps/centers as space and educator for balance/respite. Annual Conference is virtual.

11 New technologies and social media create an almost “hyper- individualism” at the expense of community and relationships. In response to the rise of technologically-mediated relationships, Episcopal ministries have recommitted themselves to building and forming strong faith-based communities that nurture a sense of belonging. Faith formation – in a variety of settings – leads the way in forming lifelong disciples and preparing people for engagement in Episcopal tradition and mission. In a technological world, Episcopal faith formation is helping people to develop new relational abilities and bridge cultural and economic divisions. It helps people discover creation and the natural world.

12 Camp/center offers an online resource center Camp/center collects technology at front desk Teaching people to live in community: Make meatloaf, etc. Evolving population at camps; broader spectrum of people from a variety of backgrounds Build a community/personal ownership year-round by staying in touch through technology Connecting with individuals and staying connected Intergenerational programs: People are gathering based on interest, as opposed to age/location. Teaching basic character-building skills: Respect, etc. Offering a sense of belonging Being more personal with the people you’re engaging with  more commitment to human services Offer interest-, service- oriented and outdoorsy activities Conference center as place for face-to-face interaction in largely virtual church. Technology is ingrained, but opportunities exist to leave them behind for community- focused opportunities; intentional structures/rules in place An opportunity for all centers/camps to be connected and provide a more global connection. Attendees become your marketers, by sharing where they are Shifting our assumptions about technology

13 Technology is being integrated into all spheres of life – people work, learn, shop, play and even worship virtually. Technology is being used to create and enhance human relationships and community, even rebuilding relationships lost due to distance and time. People are discovering rich digital resources for their spiritual lives, connecting with each other, and creating virtual faith communities to nurture and support their faith growth. There is a growing distrust for the institutional church and its services. People are finding meaning and purpose through participation in online and secular communities that provide social services, inspire them to address justice issues and meet human needs for connection.

14 Not dependent on budget/$ from Episcopal church/diocese Camp/center as the Diocesan HQ Offering pre-program online and completion on-site at camp Centers need renaming/branding. Online relationships after experiences at camp/center are continued through technology. Use technology to address the needs of your community. Camp/center as resource/entry point to Episcopal Church Imagery/marketing/branding is crowd-sourced, intentional Honoring that relationships have changed & changing our assumptions about relationships Playing role as an interfaith/exploratory place for spirituality A model of the core Episcopal values Is the place where people discover and discuss how to effect change. Change the wording that appeals to human values Operationally, facilities, program, HR, etc. are shifting Is an outdoor/beautiful space that makes centers unique in this world. Timing shift: 5 weeks of summer camp and weekend retreats are no longer the timeframes.

15 Who are you serving now? What new audiences might exist in one or more of the scenarios?

16 People Facilities Site Technology Partnerships Financial Other

17 Develop at least 1 “want ad” in each scenario. [USER] needs to [USER’S NEED] because [SURPRISING INSIGHT]. Examples: High-energy teenager seeks awesome social network. Interests should include issues of societal importance (E.g. how much parents suck and why being a vegetarian might be cool). Willingness to IM constantly during the school year is a MUST! Crotchety, aging Episcopalian seeks others to explore the meaning of these latter years of life and what is to come. I love Jesus, but hate his followers. Disillusioned in Indiana seeks a way to embody my love of God without egos or politics. You have 20 minutes! Come back prepared to share in small groups.


19 What ideas have you thinking? How can you take this process home?



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